As California continues to grapple with a series of ongoing storms, which have battered the state with extreme rainfall and winds, officials are anticipating that the "worst" is "still in front of us."
"In the last 10 days, 12 people have lost their lives to these floods," Gov. Gavin Newsom said on Sunday. "These floods are deadly, and have now turned [out] to be more deadly than even the wildfires here in the state."
Newsom shared that more civilians had lost their lives to flooding in 10 days than had died from wildfires in two years. Among those who died was a 2-year-old boy, whom authorities said was killed after a redwood tree fell on his home in Northern California.
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On Saturday, as the first of two atmospheric rivers hit, several counties along the coast were placed under a flood watch, according to CBS San Francisco, which reported that some neighborhoods saw up to six inches of rainfall.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Warning sign in Sausalito, California
The second storm system is expected to "quickly arrive on Tuesday with amounts slightly less heavy, but impacting locations farther south into southern California," per the National Weather Service (NWS). Additionally, the Sierra Nevada could see up to 6 feet of snow.
"The cumulative effect of successive heavy rainfall events will lead to additional instances of flooding," according to the agency, which warns that "susceptible terrain and areas near recent burn scars will be most at risk for debris flows and rapid runoff."
Justin Sullivan/Getty Cyclists ride through flooded bike in Sausalito, California
Officials are also warning that the snowfall "is likely to increase the threat of avalanches," while strong winds "could lead to the threat of downed trees and power outages."
As of Monday morning, there are already over 132,000 customers without power across the state, according to PowerOutage.Us.
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The Sacramento County of Emergency Services issued an evacuation order for the Wilton area on Sunday, which went into immediate effect.
"Flooding is imminent," officials said in the order. "Rising water may spill over onto the nearest roadways and cut off access to leave the area."
"We are expecting high winds through the night reaching approximately 50-60 mph gusts. Power outages and downed trees are likely," they added. "We are urging residents to get out now."
Officials in Santa Cruz County also issued an evacuation warning for certain areas from Sunday evening through Tuesday
Casey Flanigan/imageSPACE/Shutterstock Rio Del Mar Beach in Aptos, California, after being hit by a storm this week
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Speaking on Sunday, California Secretary of Natural Resources Wade Crowfoot said that the extreme weather in January has been "supercharged by climate change."
According to recent research by UCLA, climate change has made "extreme precipitation in California twice as likely" and the worsening storms are "projected to generate 200% to 400% more runoff by the end of the century."
Casey Flanigan/imageSPACE/Shutterstock Storm surge damage along California's Central-Northern Coast
During the press conference, Newsom said officials are working "around the clock" to "be as proactive as we can."
In addition to a state of emergency that was declared last week, the lawmaker said he was requesting an emergency presidential declaration. That declaration was approved late Sunday evening, according to a White House press release.
"Just be cautious over the course of the next week," Newsom told Californians. "Don't test fate."