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Storm track: Messy commute ahead?

January 7, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
Winter storm number three slams into Southern California, dropping heavy snow on the Grapevine and the Cajon Pass and bringing another deluge of rain to an already water-logged Southland. Are we in for a slippery Monday commute?The last in a trifecta of winter storms blows into our region, and this one's bringing heavy snow. Along the Grapevine in Gorman, a major snowfall slowed traffic, even sending cars spinning out of control and off the I-5 Freeway.

It's a similar wintry scene in the Cajon Pass. The CHP is escorting drivers along a section of the 15 Freeway, thanks to near-zero visibility.

Click here for Live Mega Doppler 7000 HD animated maps

Scroll down for known school closures, power outages, street closures, and evacuations.

The snow covered several mountain areas on Sunday. Big Bear received a good six to 10 inches of snow overnight, making roads treacherous. Chains were required along the mountain passes. The heavy winter weather is expected to bring more snow well into Monday.

It's not over yet in Lake Tahoe, either. People are digging out after getting up to 18 inches of snow overnight. Another foot is expected by nightfall.

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School closures:

For Monday morning, all Rim of the World School District schools in Crestline, Lake Arrowhead and Running Springs in San Bernardino County will be closed because of snow and adverse weather conditions.

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State of Emergency:
Gov. Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency Saturday in Glenn, Kings, and Sacramento Counties due to extreme winds and heavy rain.

The governor's emergency proclamation allows state emergency services to deploy additional personnel, equipment, and facilities to deal with the winter weather.
Click here for more information.

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Power outages:

More than a quarter-million Southern California Edison customers lost power during the recent storm, as did more than 42,000 Los Angeles Department of Water and Power customers, and more than 14,000 were still without power late this afternoon, utility officials said.

Storm-related problems last night and early today included transformer fires and wires knocked down by falling trees or high winds.

About 252,100 customers had service interruptions of several seconds to several hours since midnight, said SCE spokesman Gil Alexander.

Late this afternoon, about SCE 6,530 customers were still without electricity, he said.

About 36 percent of Edison customers affected by the storm were in communities around Los Angeles, 27 percent were in the Inland Empire, 26 percent north of Los Angeles and 11 percent in Orange County.

Power has been restored to 34,000 DWP customers, while 6,530 were still in the dark, said DWP spokesman Joe Ramallo.

The majority of DWP outages affected customers south of Mulholland Drive, with about a quarter of the outages in the San Fernando Valley, Ramallo said.

Most customers lost power for a few hours or less, although some were without power for longer periods, Ramallo said.

At 4 p.m., more than 8,062 DWP customers were still affected by power outages.

DWP had 61 crews in the field working to restore power to affected customers, Ramallo said. The utility supplies power to 1.4 million electric customer accounts, nearly all within the city limits.

If you are experiencing power disruption or see downed power lines, please call (800) DIAL-DWP for more information.

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Street closures:

The rain that has been falling has flooded roadways causing a number of street closures.

Forest Lawn Drive between Memorial Park and the L.A. Zoo is closed because of excessive run-off.

A number of streets in the San Fernando Valley are closed.:
-- Burbank Boulevard at Hayvenhurst Avenue
-- Balboa Boulevard and Victory Boulevard
-- Burbank Boulevard at Balboa Boulevard
-- Hayvenhurst Avenue at the Ventura (101) Freeway
-- Victory Boulevard at Haskell Avenue

In Orange County, flooding prompted officials to close Santiago Canyon Road between Silverado Canyon Road and Modjeska Canyon roads.

Two northbound lanes on the 15 Freeway near Devore are closed due to a mudflow, and flooding also affects the southbound freeway.

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Evacuations:

Authorities have lifted mandatory evacuation orders for Orange County canyons, but voluntary evacuations remain in effect for Modjeska, Harding, and Williams Canyons. Silverado Canyon is open.

Voluntary evacuation orders for large animals were also in effect for all areas.

The Orange County evacuation center has been set up at Villa Park High School, 18042 Taft Ave, Villa Park, located on Taft between Center Drive and Santiago Blvd.

Residents can relocate their small animals to Orange County Animal Control Services, 561 The City Drive South, Orange. Questions: (714) 935-6848.

The Orange County Fairgrounds, 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa, can accept large animals. Residents are expected to bring supplies for their large animals. Residents must call ahead: (714) 708-1588.

The Public Information Hotline at the Orange County Emergency Operations Center (714) 628-7085 has been activated for any inquiries.

A voluntary evacuation has been lifted at the Oakwood Toluca Hills apartment complex northwest of downtown Los Angeles because of flooding and a small mudslide.

The Associated Press and City News Service contributed to this report


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