SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – An atmospheric river is set to bring widespread showers -- which could lead to flooding -- to San Diego County the next week.
Rain is expected to come down Monday afternoon and finally taper off Thursday, with the most widespread and heavy rainfall coming Tuesday.
Initial forecasts show rain totaling 1 to 3 inches for most areas of San Diego, with up to 5 inches of snow in some mountain locations, according to 10News weather anchor Vanessa Paz.
According to the National Weather Service, localized flooding will be possible Tuesday and typically dry desert areas will see significant flow. Thunderstorms will also be possible in some areas.
Heavy showers are expected to continue Wednesday morning, with more roadway and local flooding possible, NWS reported.
Thursday, if showers continue, flooding could continue to be an issue. Though, currently showers are expected to ease. Showers are expected to move out of the county by Friday.
The showers are expected to help San Diego's reservoirs for the rest of the year. Currently, much of California is either "abnormally dry" or in a "moderate drought." San Diego is currently not experiencing any drought conditions, according to the state's drought monitor.
As of Feb. 11, San Diego's reservoirs are between 23 to as much as 88 percent full, according to the city.
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An atmospheric river is a column of condensed water vapor in the atmosphere that are capable of producing high levels of rain and snow, the NWS says. When these rivers move inland and over the mountains, the water vapor rises and cools, creating heavy precipitation.
While most atmospheric rivers are weak, some can create high levels of rainfall and flooding. About 30 - 50 percent of California's annual rainfall occurs in just a few atmospheric rivers, according to NWS.