‘Darth Nino’ pummels California: Storm driven by worst El Nino ever causes chaos as drivers are left stranded in their cars, roads turn into rivers and a TORNADO hits

Californian streets have been turned to rivers after one of the biggest El Nino storms in decades pummeled parts of the state – but forecasters say the worst is still to come.

High winds and the most rain seen on a single day in four months caused widespread flooding, prompting chaos on the roads. Some drivers were forced to abandon their cars as the water levels left them stranded.

Parts of Southern California were also rattled by a 4.5 magnitude earthquake. It struck two miles north of Banning – a city 85 miles east of Los Angeles – but left no injuries.

However some residents in the drought-stricken state have welcomed the extreme weather, believing it may help replenish depleted water resources.

California’s water deficit is so deep after four years of drought that a ‘steady parade of storms’ like these will be needed for years to come, said Mike Anderson, climatologist for the state’s Department of Water Resources.

Despite these storms, Shawn Coburn says growers like him, working thousands of acres in the western San Joaquin Valley, expect no water this year from the federal government’s vast system of reservoirs and canals. He blames strict environmental laws designed to protect endangered fish.

Tuesday brought the most rain Los Angeles has seen in any single day in 2015 except for one — September 15, when the remnants of Hurricane Linda washed ashore, the LA Times reported.

Los Angeles authorities have spent days getting the transients from low-lying areas and shuttles were available to bring people to shelters that had room for as many as 6,000 beds, according to Mayor Eric Garcetti.

There was a renewed risk that the Los Angeles River and other waterways could rise quickly as the third of four predicted storms moved in from the Pacific.

Meteorologists have a grim outlook for the weather in the near future. Many believe storms lining up along the Pacific coast could continue to wreak havoc across the state.

Johnny Powell, a forecaster with the National Weather Service, has said as much as much as 15 inches of rain could fall in the next 16 days in Northern California, with about two feet of snow expected in the highest points of the Sierra Nevada.