Modesto -- Flooded streets and dozens of fender benders were the results of nearly an inch of rain and wind that made up the second in a series of storms this week.
The third round starts today, with National Weather Service flood warnings holding through Sunday and county officials warning of potential flooding at Orestimba Creek near Newman and Dry Creek east of Modesto.
Much of the flooding Friday came from storm drains clogged by leaves that were blown off trees by 20 mph winds.
Modesto waste-water division workers Peter Vasquez and Adam Holguin had been to dozens of locations around east Modesto by Friday afternoon. They had to unclog some stubborn drains twice.
During the first break in the rain about 2 p.m., Vasquez raked leaves from the drain while Holguin used a vacuum to suck up the water that had spilled into traffic on Oakdale Road at Orangeburg Avenue.
Modesto street crews have been working until 10 p.m. most weeknights to get leaves off streets to reduce flooding and to hand out sandbags, which are available at the Modesto corporation yard all weekend.
Modesto spokeswoman Jessica Smart said the city had received more than 70 phone calls regarding sandbags since Wednesday morning and has handed out more than eight pallets of bags.
Most of the people who picked up sandbags did so for their homes, but a few got them for businesses.
"Most people are simplyprotecting their driveways, walkways and some low spots," Smart said. "(They're) trying to prevent water from causing property damage and inconvenience of customers or ability to walk to and from private property."
The Parks, Recreation and Neighborhoods Department will pick up up leaves over the weekend in preparation for another storm that is expected to hit by early afternoon today.
Traffic accidents were on the rise around the county, most caused by people driving too fast for conditions or following too closely behind the people in front of them, said California Highway Patrol Sgt. John O'Neil. There were no major wrecks.
The heavy rain put a damper on some holiday events.
The downtown Modesto Dickens Faire will go on as scheduled today, but the Celebration of Lights Parade has been postponed to a date yet to be determined.
No one was Christmas tree shopping Friday until the rain let up in the afternoon. That's when Maria Cabrera and Joel Garcia, along with their 3- and 9-year-old sons, went to the Avila family tree lot at Carpenter and Grayson roads. They bought the largest tree on the lot.
The lot is at the Avila Goat Dairy, where a family not only can get a tree, but visit a petting zoo of farm animals. "The ducks definitely enjoyed the rain, but that's about it," Lonny Avila said. "We kept all the goats and cows and chickens inside until the sun came out."
Nearly an inch of rain fell on the ducks Friday, and they will have more to shower in throughout the weekend. About a half-inch of rain is predicted to fall today and Sunday. It should let up by Sunday night, but there is a 40 percent chance it will return Tuesday and a 70 percent chance Wednesday.
To report city tree emergencies, call (209) 342-2249.
To report street flooding, call (209) 577-6200.
To report traffic signal and-or streetlight outages, call (209) 342-2297 between the hours of 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.; call (209) 575-5245 between 3:30 p.m. and 7 a.m.
Sandbags are available for free to the public at the city of Modesto corporation yard, 501 N. Jefferson St., until 6 p.m. For sandbag-related questions, call (209) 342-2246.
Organizers of outdoor events scheduled throughout the area have been playing wait-and-see with the weather. For much of Friday, a Celebration of Lights Parade hot line said the downtown Modesto event still was scheduled for today. But late afternoon, the city tweeted that it was being postponed because many parade entries were pulling out. The parade's companion event earlier in the day, the Dickens Faire, remains scheduled.
In Waterford, the Christmas tree lighting is moving inside. It will be at the Community Center, 540 C St. A Las Posadas processional will start at5:30 p.m., followed by music, then Santa and Mrs. Claus' arrival at 6:30.
The "Journey to Bethlehem" interactive walking tour representing the the journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem began its run Thursday at Grace Community Christian Church in Ceres, but was called off Friday because the land was so muddy from rain. An organizer said Friday, "If I had to guess, I'd say we'll probably cancel Saturday, too." If that's the case, the event would return next Thursday through Saturday. To learn more, call (209) 531-1902.
Here are two more events set for today, but you'd be wise to call before heading out:
Costumed tour guides will lead participants on Lamplight Tours through decorated Columbia State Historic Park during the walking play "The Seven Pound Christmas Nugget" as the rumor of gold quickly spreads. Refreshments follow the tours, which leave every 15 minutes starting at 5:30 p.m. $18-$22 adults; ages 5 and under are free. (209) 588-9128.
The Angels Camp Centennial Holiday Celebration welcomes Santa Claus with a parade. Local merchants join the festivities with special bargains and festive window displays. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Parade begins at 2 p.m. Downtown Angels Camp. (209) 736-1333.
Bee staff writer Erin Tracy can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 578-2366.