First storm expected as Thanksgiving travel gets underway

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MERCED, California (KSEE) – The first big storm was on its way to the Central Valley Tuesday.

It’s expected to bring rain and snow to the area, as one of the busiest holiday travel periods of the year gets underway. It started with sprinkles in the north valley and was expected to pick up at the same time as holiday travel

“We get a lot of people coming in on trips back home from college. We got a lot of the UC kids coming home,” Anthony Guzman a gas station employee said.

Fellow employee Christopher Compian said this is the busiest time of year for them and the mix of rain along with added traffic is a scary combo.

“I’m just kind of nervous how it is because the traffic right here in the intersection. I just hope everyone drives safe,” Guzman said.

“We’re right next to the highway and you know the cars go by fast and this intersection is really iffy so car crashes happen frequently,” Compian said.

Others were looking forward to the storm.

“I’m just excited. I mean the valley, it’s the valley we don’t get rain much. So that would be nice,” Constantino Guevas said.

The California Highway Patrol is spreading the message of safety as winter weather approaches. Officer Shasta Tollefson said cars should ideally be prepped well before the first rain when oil on the roadways make them the slickest.

“Make sure your tire treads are still good, your tire pressure is still good, make sure those wiper blades are still in working order and that you have a full tank of gas,” she said.

The CHP is planning a maximum enforcement period for the holiday travel. meaning extra officers will be out on the roads.

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