A large number of people in the San Jose area had to evacuate Saturday evening as a strong winds and rains prompted authorities to close several roads and highways in the area.
Officials say they had to close the highway to northbound traffic, including the Highway 101 Freeway, for at least an hour during the storm. The San Jose Fire Department, the San Jose Air-Conditioning District and Cal Fire had to shut down the air conditioning system.
“There were no power lines,” said Lt. Paul Pimentel, public information officer for the San Jose fire department.
Pimentel says the storm is expected to continue into Sunday with wind gusts over 100 mph, with rain forecast along the coast by Saturday evening.
Some residents who live and work near the storm’s path are asking people to avoid getting into flooded cars or boats.
Officials said there are no reports of power lines being damaged.
The storm is the strongest in San Jose in years. Officials say at least seven homes have flooded, with at least six other homes under water and three at least four others reported to have been under water. The storm also caused extensive damage to some of the town’s most prized buildings including the San Jose Municipal Airport, the city’s airport-like structure.
Residents were forced out of their homes early Saturday. Many are stuck in floodwaters and have been advised to stay away from roads.
The storm has also caused a number of road closures. The San Jose Airport was temporarily closed due to flooding from the storm. The airport was also closed due to flooding from the storm and is expected to reopen by Sunday.
The San Jose Police Department says it was closed to traffic due to the high water and heavy rains.
The storm also caused some serious structural damage to the San Jose Fire Department’s West Lake District.
San Jose officials said the fire department has been closed while crews clean out and clean up the water that caused flooding at various fire stations around the city. The fire department has asked people who want to help to contact the San Jose Fire Department by cell phone, text and e-mail.