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.
3/1/23 7:51 p.m. — Leggett Valley Unified schools are canceled for Thursday, Mar. 2. School closures and delays can be monitored here.
3/1/23 6:09 p.m. — Reports of power coming back on in parts of downtown Willits and Brooktrails are trickling in from PG&E customers. PG&E reports that crews are on the scene of the outage, which resulted in over 3,100 customers losing power at 3:14 p.m. Wednesday, Mar. 1. Power remains out for over 1,200 customers throughout the county due to the impacts of the most recent winter storm. Outage status can be tracked here.
3/1/23 5:41 p.m. — State Route 1 is fully open from just north of Rockport to State Route 271/State Route 101. Both lanes of State Route 128 from Fish Rock Rd. to Cloverdale are open.
3/1/23 4:15 p.m. — Over 3,100 PG&E customers in Willits and Brooktrails are without power as of 3:14 p.m. Wednesday, Mar. 1. PG&E cites the cause as the weather and that a PG&E crew is en route to assess the outage. No estimated time of restoration has been provided at this time. Outage status can be tracked here.
3/1/23 1:15 p.m. — State Route 175 is open from Hopland to State Route 20 in Lake County. Drive carefully!
MENDOCINO Co., 3/1/23 —After a week of stormy winter weather that brought wind, snow, hail, and rain to Mendocino County, residents and first responders are welcoming a brief respite of sun before snow and rain return the evening of Friday, Mar. 3. However, we’re not out of the clear even with sunny conditions – Northern California is experiencing freezing temperatures that have created dangerous road conditions. And for those in more rural and northern areas of the county, power outages and school closures are the new norm.
We’ve put together an overview of storm impacts for Mar. 1, and we’ll keep you updated on major developments. We also have a winter weather info guide that we recommend you bookmark to check for current conditions. There are also additional resources included at the bottom of the article so you can check the exact conditions in your area.
Current road closures
As of the morning of Wednesday, Mar. 1, State Route 101 and State Route 162 are both open. State Route 128 from Fish Rock Rd. to Cloverdale is open with one-way traffic control in place due to storm-related road work.
The following roads are closed in Mendocino County due to storm impacts as of 11 a.m., Mar. 1:
- State Route 271 from Reynolds Overcrossing to State Route 101 south of Piercy. No estimated time of reopening.
- State Route 1 from Route 271/State Route 101 to Cottonneva Creek north of Rockport. No estimated time of reopening.
- Road B. at East Rd. in Redwood Valley due to downed trees and phone lines. No estimated time of reopening.
- State Route 175 from 5.5 miles east of State Route 101 to the north junction of State Route 29 in Lake County. No estimated time of reopening.
Traffic collisions have been a constant due to icy and slick roads. According to the County of Mendocino, road crews started sanding main roads at 3:30 a.m. Wednesday morning. The County is asking drivers to “exercise caution” during the freezing weather and to slow down and move over for road crews. Brooktrails Township Fire Department reports black ice throughout shaded areas of Brooktrails. Additionally, California Highway Patrol Ukiah is asking drivers to “please slow down.” State road conditions can be monitored here.
School closures and delays
The following schools are closed today, Mar. 1: Leggett Valley Unified schools, Sherwood School, and Whale Gulch School. Willits Unified is on a 2-hour delay. School closures and delays can be monitored here.
Thousands of PG&E residents remain without power, the vast majority of which have been without power since the first storm on Feb. 22 brought high winds to the county. Portions of the county may not see power restored until Mar 5. The areas with the most outages right now are Piercy, Leggett, Laytonville, Branscomb, Dos Rios, Farley, Longvale, unincorporated south Willits, and Yorkville. Outage status can be monitored here.
Freezing weather conditions will continue through Mar. 3
The entire Mendocino coast is under a National Weather Service Eureka (NWS Eureka) hard freeze watch through the morning of Thursday, Mar. 2. According to NWS Eureka, hard freeze and frost conditions can kill crops, other sensitive vegetation, and damage unprotected outdoor plumbing. NWS Eureka recommends the following:
Take steps now to protect tender plants from the cold. To prevent freezing and possible bursting of outdoor water pipes they should be wrapped, drained, or allowed to drip slowly. Those that have in-ground sprinkler systems should drain them and cover above- ground pipes to protect them from freezing.
Additionally, the freezing temperatures being experienced across the county can create dangerous conditions for humans, including the unhoused and individuals who work outside. Unhoused individuals seeking shelter can contact Redwood Community Services in Ukiah and the Mendocino Coast Hospitality Center in Fort Bragg.
Animals, including pets and livestock can also be impacted. The Humane Society of the United States recommends keeping pets indoors during freezing temperatures, except for brief walks or exercise. The Humane Society offers tips on how to care for pets, livestock and wild animals during freezing weather here and what to do if you see a pet left outside in the cold here.
If you’re interested in an overview of the statewide impacts of these storms from a meteorological perspective, we recommend checking out Daniel Swain of Weather West, who has been sharing information throughout these major weather events.
Mendocino County’s many microclimates mean the weather conditions may vary based on your location, especially by elevation. You can check for the specific forecast for your neighborhood and on current road conditions as they develop.
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
Sarah Stierch covers wildfires, breaking news, and more for The Mendocino Voice. You can follow Stierch on Twitter and learn more about her work and donate to her directly at here. Contact Stierch at [email protected]. The Voice maintains editorial control and independence.
Highway 101 is NOT a “State Route”… it’s a US Highway