Storm brings gusty winds, rain, possible thunderstorms to Sonoma County

The National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory through Monday.|

A storm expected Sunday night that promises to bring much-needed rain to Sonoma County and the rest of the Bay Area will also bring strong winds and a chance of thunderstorms, according to the National Weather Service.

A wind advisory is in effect until 5 a.m. Monday in the North Bay, as well as the East Bay Hills, San Francisco and the Central Coast.

Meteorologists are predicting winds as strong as 35 mph, with gusts that could reach 45 mph.

The Santa Rosa Fire Department, in a tweet posted shortly after the advisory was issued, warned North Bay residents to “secure any outdoor objects” and prepare for possible power outages.

Rain was expected to reach Sonoma County after 5 p.m. on Sunday and last through the night, with the rainfall tapering off by dawn. Scattered showers and thunderstorms are possible throughout the day Monday, National Weather Service forecasters said.

Meteorologists were predicting higher elevations along the North Bay coast could see an inch of rain.

Valleys in Sonoma and Napa counties are likely to average half an inch, NWS meteorologists Ryan Walbrun told The Press Democrat Saturday.

“We’ll take what we can get,” Walbrun said.

The rain is a welcome relief given that most of the North Coast is in “extreme drought,” according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

On Twitter, the National Weather Service warned drivers to look out for slick roads during their Monday morning commute.

Some snow is expected for the Truckee-Tahoe area between Sunday and Monday though snow levels are uncertain as of Friday given the mild temperatures, per the National Weather Service.

Higher elevations in the Northern Sierra could see 5 to 8 inches of snowfall, however. There will likely be some weather-related issues along I-80 and US-50 in the region, according to meteorologist Scott Rowe, who advised travelers going to or from the Sierra to monitor CalTrans for road condition updates.

The predicted rain comes on the heels of a statewide spring heat wave this week that saw record-setting temperatures. Downtown Santa Rosa hit a high of 89 degrees Tuesday. (The previous record was 86 degrees in 1926.) South Lake Tahoe also broke a daily heat record Thursday.

Following Sunday’s rainstorm the forecast goes back to dry weather for at least a week, Walbrun said.

You can reach Marisa Endicott at or on Twitter/Facebook at @InYourCornerTPD.

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