This is a developing situation and information may change. We’ll update this article as more information becomes available. The most recent information will be updated at the top of the article, with the earlier reports below.
MENDOCINO Co., 1/6/23 – As Mendocino County prepares for another storm, over 2,500 PG&E customers remain without power. This includes in Gualala, Point Arena, Manchester and Albion, where many customers have been without power since the storm’s start Wednesday afternoon. The majority of those without power remain so due to PG&E being “unable to access the affected equipment” resulting in no estimates on when power will be restored.
All roads impacted by the storm are open in Mendocino County, including Highways 175, 1 and 128. Keep in mind, it is likely these roads will be impacted by the upcoming storm system.
Information is changing rapidly and we’ll be keeping you updated on current conditions throughout the next several days. Although local agencies are preparing for the storm, emergency resources are likely to be stretched thin due to the historic conditions — if you can avoid travel, please stay off the roads for everyone’s safety.
You can read more about the storm’s original forecast in our previous article about this storm, and there are additional resources included at the bottom of the article so you can check the exact conditions in your area.
1/6/23 8:41 a.m. — Highway 175 in Hopland has reopened.
1/5/23 5:44 p.m. — While power remains out in Point Arena, the City of Point Arena has opened a charging and WIFI station at the Point Arena City Hall/Veteran’s Memorial Building. The facility is operating on a generator and has full power. They are encouraging residents to visit to charge electronics, use the WIFI, and receive updates about the storm response. The center is open 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday and Saturday and daily until the outage lasts. 451 School St., Point Arena.
1/5/23 4:02 p.m. — We’re happy to report that all roads on Highway 1 are open! The only closure of state maintained roads in Mendocino County that remains in place is a full closure of Highway 175 from Highway 101 to Hopland Railroad Crossing in Hopland. Rock slides and downed trees are still popping up throughout the county. Please drive safely!
1/5/23 1:38 p.m. — Highway 1 between Navarro Ridge Rd. and Pacific Reefs Rd. in Albion is open again.
1/5/23 1:01 p.m. — The South Coast Fire Protection District reports that while most of Highway 1 is open (except a detoured portion in downtown Point Arena), Caltrans is implementing partial traffic control to safely remove trees along the highway.
A new road closure is in place in Albion on Highway 1 between Navarro Ridge Rd. and Pacific Reefs Rd. due to a downed tree. It is expected to open at 11:59 p.m. tonight. Please drive carefully!
In a statewide news conference, PG&E stated that over 440,000 customers lost power during the storm and over 100,000 remain without power. For those who are out in Mendocino County, we’ll likely be waiting longer in many areas, especially customers in rural or more isolated areas due to limited resources and weather, which slows down response time.
1/5/23 11:02 a.m. — Highway 128 from Highway 1 to just west of Navarro is open again after being closed due dangerous conditions. As of 10 am, the Navarro River remains below flood stage and the Russian River in Hopland has fallen to 14.65 feet, below flood stage.
1/5/23 9:39 a.m. — Mendocino County Sheriff Matt Kendall is asking residents “to please be patient” as the Mendocino County Department of Transportation, Caltrans, and utility crews work to help the county recover from the storm. “These folks are still working in some seriously dangerou conditions and they have safety protocols they must follow,” he shared, “These protocols and precautions will allow them to make it home to their families tonight.” Sheriff Kendall also reminds residents to obey road closures, to slow down when crews are working in the area, and provide a wide swath when you drive by for safety.
1/5/23 6 a.m. — Many roads remain closed, including state highways. Current road closures include:
- Highway 1 in Albion to Masonite Industrial Rd., just west of Navarro due to a downed tree. Estimated to reopen at 2:01 p.m. Thursday
- Highway 1 north and southbound from Miner Hole to Gasker Slough between Floughville and Stornetta due to a downed tree
- Highway 1 in downtown Point Arena from Lake St. to Main St. due to a downed tree. Estimated to reopen at 12:01 p.m. Thursday
- Highway 1 north and southbound from Collins Viaduct Bridge to Road 8067 south of Anchor Bay due to a downed tree
- Highway 101 to Hopland Railroad Crossing in Hopland due to flooding. Estimated to reopen at 9:59 p.m. Thursday
- S. Orchard Avenue in Ukiah due to flooding
The National Weather Service Eureka reports that the Navarro River near Navarro reached 22.19 feet, just below its flood stage of 23 feet, at 5:15 a.m. Even though the river has not yet reached flood stage as of today, it is expected to do so on Sunday morning when another storm graces the county. However, the Russian River in Hopland was not so lucky, reaching its flood stage (15 feet) just before 6 a.m. this morning at 17.3 feet. Please travel safely in the area, and as the old adage goes “turn around, don’t drown.”
1/4/23 9:20 p.m. — National Weather Service Eureka reports that the cyclone will continue to bring heavy rainfall into Mendocino County through Thursday evening. Fort Bragg could expect 1.33 inches, Ukiah and Covelo over 1.8 inches, and Laytonville over 2.5 inches of rain. Flooding and mudslides, which we are already reporting, are possible.
South Coast Fire Protection District, which oversees first responding on the southern Mendocino Coast, will begin responding to non-life threatening responses to “assess the damage and clear the roadways.” The district has hired two loaders to help clear debris on the roads in its coverage area on Thursday. However, the district reminds everyone: “It’s a mess out there. We are doing everything we can to keep up with this storm, thank you for your patience.”
Multiple power lines are reported down in the vicinity of SR 175 and Red Hill Road, and traffic controls and possibly a road closure may be put into place until the situation is cleared.
1/4/23 9:02 p.m — NWS Eureka is warning that SE-S winds will be picking up into Thursday morning, which could result in additional outages, downed trees, and objects being blown around. High surf up to 30 feet is also possible into Thursday along the Mendocino, Humboldt, and Del Norte county coasts.
According to Caltrans, Highway 1 in both directions in downtown Point Arena from Riverside Dr. to Lake St. is closed due to downed trees. It is expected to reopen around 12:00 p.m. on Thursday.
1/4/23 6:55 p.m — Highway 128 is closed from Highway 1 to Masonite Industrial Rd. (just west of the north fork of the Navarro River). The road is anticipated to reopen at 2:01 p.m. on Thursday.
1/4/23 6:41 p.m — Emergency responders have been facing difficulties responding to a medical call at the Creekside Cabins due to the location of the sink hole from last week’s storm at the entrance of the park, but multiple crews are on the way.
1/4/23 6:15 p.m — Highway 1 from Miner Hole Rd to Gasker Slough in Flumeville, south of Stornetta, is closed due to a downed tree. Caltrans expects it to reopen by 7:59 p.m. Wednesday.
The South Coast Fire Protection District, which covers the southern Mendocino Coast, is pleading for people to stay home or shelter in place. “It is too unsafe to be out in these conditions,” they shared on Facebook. The district will stop responding to incidents unless they are life threatening due to the safety of their fire crews.
1/4/23 6 p.m — Emergency crews are responding to reports of a fire in the trees near downed power lines at Highway 101 and Reynolds Highway, just north of Willits. There are also a number of downed trees impeding traffic across the county, including one-way traffic on S.R. 20, and S.R. 175 in Lake County.
SR 128 is remains closed from West Limits Philo to Ruddick Rd. and Highway 1 remains closed at mile marker 19, near Stornetta.
Sandbags are available at the following locations: Friedman’s Home Improvement in Ukiah, Hopland Band of Pomo Indians located at the corner of Hwy 101 and Hwy 175, Redwood Valley Fire Station at 8481 East Rd. in Redwood Valley, outside the Willits Police Department located at 125 E Commercial Street in Willits, Laytonville Fire Station at 44950 Willis Ave in Laytonville, Fort Bragg Fire Department at 141 N. Main St. in Fort Bragg, and at Covelo High School, at the intersection of Airport and Howard.
1/4/23 5 p.m — The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office warns that a flash flood watch is now in effect for the southern portions of the August Complex burn scar, including portions of northeastern Mendocino and northern Lake counties, and will last until Thursday afternoon — more details here
Emergency crews have been working to clear downed lines and trees from the vicinity of Highway 1 and Navarro Ridge Road, but have been having difficulty clearing the area. Downed lines, rocks, and downed trees continue to be reported across the county.
Mendocino Transit Authority (MTA) has canceled service on routes 75 and 95 on Thursday due to road conditions. MTA asks riders to monitor route conditions at its website.
Caltrans will be activating emergency road signage across the state to assist travelers with safe driving over the coming days, and additional road crews are out responding to incidents as they arise. People are encouraged to avoid the roads if at all possible, and if you are driving, do not attempt to drive through flooded roadways or past warning signs.
Pacific Community Charter School has canceled classes on Thursday, January 5.
1/4/23 3:50 p.m — In Fort Bragg, public works workers are working to clear drains full of debris, and residents are asked to report blocked or overflowing drains to the city, according to Lindy Peters in the city’s most recent update. 30 feet swells are possible along the Mendocino Coast in the upcoming forecast in the next 12 – 24 hours, and residents of low lying areas are asked to take caution.
More than 1800 customers remain without power on the Mendocino Coast, with outages occurring south of Little River all the way to Gualala, although some of the outages that began Wednesday morning have been resolved. Smaller outages are ongoing at a number of other locations around the county, with no estimated time of restoration provided for many of the incidents.
1/4/23 3:25 p.m. — The National Weather Service Eureka (NWS) has upgraded its Flood Warning for the Navarro River and the community of Navarro to a River Flood Watch starting tonight through Thursday afternoon. NWS expects “minor flooding” when the Navarro River rises above flood stage late tonight and crests at 25.2 feet Thursday morning. The river is currently at 23 feet.
The City of Fort Bragg has been providing updates via their Facebook page, and announced that despite a pump failing at the city’s water treatment plant this morning, that problem has now been resolved. There are several areas within the city that are being used as staging locations for PG&E, and so roads may be closed off in those areas. Watch the most recent update from Fort Bragg here.
The Noyo beach park and the Noyo jetty parking lot have been closed due to high winds, large surf, and flooding, according to the Fort Bragg Police Department.
In Willits, power outages have led to several gas stations requiring generators to operate, including Browns Corner and Chevron, the City of Willits announced. As of 2 pm, the gas pumps at Safeway in Willits were not operating.
Laytonville Unified has notified parents that high school will remain open as long as there is power, but basketball practice and today’s game has been canceled.
1/4/23 2:56 p.m. — The City of Willits Water Department reports that the upcoming storm is “complicating the Department’s efforts to provide water due to sediment entering the reservoirs.” The city is asking water customers to limit their water use to allow the department to “recharge the system.”
1/4/23, 2:47 p.m. — Caltrans confirmed that Route 1 is now open to through traffic south of Gallaway near Iverson Point Rd after being closed due to downed power lines and trees. Northbound remains closed. The Mendocino Transit Authority (MTA) is warning riders that service may be impacted due to the upcoming storm. Riders are asked to monitor MTA service via its website.
1/4/23, 1:39 p.m. — Highway 1 at Mountain View Rd. in Stornetta/Manchester is closed due to downed trees. It is unknown when it will reopen.
1/4/23, 1:24 p.m. — We are seeing more closures and also have our first school closure due to the storm. The intersection of Highway 1 and Iverson Point Rd is closed per Caltrans due to trees and power lines down and blocking both lanes of of Highway 1. It is unknown when it will reopen. Additionally, Point Arena Schools will be closed on Thursday, January 5, due to storm impacts.
1/4/23, 12:44 p.m. — California State Parks has closed the following parks due to power outages and storm impacts: MacKerricher SP, Navarro River Redwoods SP, Russian Gulch SP, Sinkyone Wilderness SP, Standish Hickey State Recreation Area and Van Damme SP. The closures remain in place through Thursday.
There have also been a number of closures and cancellations for local events and attractions, including the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, Point Cabrillo Light Station, and others — we don’t recommend you travel but if you had plans, we recommend you check in advance to make sure the events is still happening.
There have been a number of reports of downed power lines and downed trees in roads around the county, and emergency crews have been responding quickly. Please do not attempt to move or touch downed power lines.
1/4/23, 12:10 p.m. — Governor Gavin Newsom has issued a State of Emergency to support response and recovery efforts throughout the state related to the storm. Additionally, power is back on for the majority of customers in Redwood Valley.
1/4/23, 10:26 a.m. — PG&E is reporting outages impacting over 4,400 customers throughout the county. On the Mendocino Coast, an estimated 3,433 customers are without power from Westport to Gualala with the largest outages in Gualala (1,021 customers), Fort Bragg (946), Point Arena and Manchester (466) and Albion (347). The Sea Ranch is also reporting an outage for 2,548. Inland, small outages dot the landscape from Anderson Valley to Leggett. Major outages are east of Hwy 101 in Willits (1,277) and Redwood Valley (395). See the bottom of this article for tips on how to prepare and stay safe during power outages.
1/4/23, 9:45 a.m. — The Mendocino Coast Humane Society (MCHS) reports that their power is out. Animal adoptions have been postponed. MCHS is asking that any animal-related emergencies in the Fort Bragg city limits be reported to the Fort Bragg Police.
1/4/23, 9:30 a.m. — High winds are already battering Mendocino County. According to the National Weather Service Eureka, “winds could grow even stronger over the next few hours.” Locally, wind gusts of 38 mph are being reported inland and 50 mph on the coast. Our neighbors to the north in Humboldt County have reported wind gusts up to 80 mph on mountain ridges!
1/4/23, 8:53 a.m. — South Coast Fire Protection District reports a second closure in the Anchor Bay area: Hwy 1 northbound at Serenisea Rd. due to fallen trees and downed power lines. No time for reopening has been established.
1/4/23, 8:41 a.m. — Fort Bragg Police Department reports that the area of Walnut St. and Grove St. are closed to traffic due to PG&E responding to widespread power outages in the area.
Fort Bragg Food Bank is open only for emergency food distribution from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. today. They are asking people to stay home unless it’s an emergency.
1/4/23, 8:16 a.m. — South Coast Fire Protection District reports that there is a hard closure on Fish Rock Rd entering Hwy 1 due to downed power lines and trees. Crews are at the scene. There is no estimated time of reopening. They are reporting that call volume to 911 has gone up delaying response. “Please stay home if you can.”
1/4/23, 8:00 a.m. — Fort Bragg Police Department reports that PG&E is using W. Cypress St. for staging trucks, equipment and resources. The police department is asking that folks “avoid utilizing the south coastal trail parking lot to minimize impact to their operations.”
Sandbags are available at the following locations, according to Mendocino County:
- Friedman’s Home Improvement in Ukiah
- Hopland Band of Pomo Indians located at the corner of Hwy 101 and Hwy 175
- Redwood Valley Fire Station
- The Willis Justice Center located at 125 E Commercial Street in Willits
- Laytonville Fire Station
Mendocino Voice Winter weather resources:
- Our guide for winter weather emergency and preparedness info — we recommend you bookmark this
- Check your specific forecast at this link along with the National Weather Service advisories and warnings, as well as their Facebook page and their Twitter page
- Check the CalTrans QuickMap for current road closures or call 1-800-GAS-ROAD
- Check for current accidents at the CHP traffic update page
- Caltrans traffic cameras can be seen here, and here are the PG&E cameras
- You can also check out the Weather Underground to look for weather stations in your area
- Check the PG&E current outage map to find or report power outages
- NWS has flood stage predictions here; and you can find USGS current streamflow information here
- NWS is seeking snowfall reports, and you can submit them to this website.
- We recommend meteorologist Daniel Swain’s Weather West Blog as a good place to find more in-depth current weather analysis