It’s been a week of savage weather on the West Coast.

This week the atmosphere has been delivering a speed bag-quick pummeling of storms to the West Coast—drenching, gusty systems backed by the power of El Niño (which by one measure is now tied for the strongest on record).

The soggy spanking has conjured spectacles not often seen in California, including at least one twister, a foul river of garbage, and cars sunk like shipwrecks in the streets. With more rain expected, images like these will no doubt continue to surface. Here’s a taste of what’s out there so far.

A swimming Lamborghini

Perhaps the No. 1 thing emergency personnel stress to motorists in wet weather is not to drive through flooded roadways. This Lamborghini enthusiast didn’t get the memo or doesn’t care, bulldozing through muddy, door-deep water on an impatient quest to get across town.

Brutal winds

Both a waterspout and a tornado were spotted Wednesday just south of L.A. Strong gusts also pushed a mobile home entirely upside-down in Paso Robles and made a street look like a bomb went off in Vernon.

Sewer Old Faithful

A gurgling fountain of storm water, presumably issuing from a manhole, appeared in Santa Barbara.

Trash river

Please do not drive or swim through this seeming regurgitation from 10 dumpsters, as the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department says it is “non-passable.”

Highway swamp

A worker with Caltrans District 7, responsible for L.A. and Ventura County, doggedly tries to unclog plugged storm drains with what looks like a rake.

“Need jetskis”

How hard is it to get the smell of urban swamp water out of car upholstery? The residents of San Diego’s Mission Valley will find out in coming weeks.

Surf’s Up!

At least on San Diego man wasn’t too upset with the flooding.

“Parade of storms”

An animation posted by the CIMSS Satellite Blog shows repeated bands of atmospheric moisture hitting the West Coast this week. For those interested, the blog also has an entrancing view of a “parade of storms that have hit California (now over the intermountain West and the Plains), are hitting California, or will hit California.”

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Transportation

    You Can’t Design Bike-Friendly Cities Without Considering Race and Class

    Bike equity is a powerful tool for reducing inequality. Too often, cycling infrastructure is tailored only to wealthy white cyclists.

  2. Amazon HQ2

    Without Amazon HQ2, What Happens to Housing in Queens?

    The arrival of the tech company’s new headquarters was set to shake up the borough’s real estate market, driving up rents and spurring displacement. Now what?

  3. A photo of a visitor posing for a photo with Elvis in downtown Nashville
    Perspective

    Cities: Don’t Fall in the Branding Trap

    From Instagram stunts to Edison bulbs, why do so many cities’ marketing plans try to convince people that they’re exactly like somewhere else?

  4. A photo of a new car dealership
    Transportation

    Subprime Auto Loans Are Turning Car Ownership Into a Trap

    A record 7 million Americans are three months late on their car payments, revealing what could be cracks in the U.S. economy.

  5. Design

    There’s a Tile Theft Epidemic in Lisbon

    With a single azulejo fetching hundreds of euros at the city’s more reputable antique stores, these tiles, sitting there out in the open, are easy pickings.