• BREAKING NEWS ABC shows live and on-demand -- Download the WATCH ABC app!

Post holiday storm brings rain, snow to SoCal

November 28, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
Rain and snow fell in the Southland Saturday, but not enough to cause debris slides on hillsides scorched by recent wildfires, according to the National Weather Service. Snow was reported in the mountains above the Grapevine section of the Golden State (5) Freeway, and California Highway Patrol officers ran escorts through the Tejon Pass before dawn, but the road was clear as of late this afternoon, according to broadcast reports.

Most of the coastal plains saw clear skies with just a few clouds over distant mountains, although more scattered showers were possible.

The rain is not expected to be enough to cause mudslides in the areas burned in the recent Station fire, Weather Service meteorologist Jamie Meier told the Los Angeles Times.

"We are not concerned about mudslides or debris flow today," he said.

But residents in northeast Los Angeles County communities used the day to set up barricades to prepare for heavier rain in the future.

One resident told a broadcast outlet they were told the threat of debris flows could last for three years.

The Aug. 26 Station fire burned about 250 square miles in the Angeles National Forest.

Parts of the Angeles Forest Highway, Angeles Crest Highway and Big Tujunga Canyon and Upper Big Tujunga Canyon roads that were closed because of the fire are to be reopened about 5 a.m. Monday, but could be closed again in the future if rain causes mudslides.

The National Weather Service forecast light rain and snow at elevations of 4,000 feet or more. The Tejon Pass near Gorman tops out at 4,160 feet and could get 2-4 inches of snow, according to the NWS.

Winds out of the north blew at 15-25 mph, with gusts up to 40 mph, but a NWS winter weather advisory expired at 3 p.m.

In Acton, a brief downpour before midnight caused at least one street to flood, but the storm cell weakened as it moved toward the Antelope Valley, said Curt Kaplan of the NWS.

Shortly after 7 a.m., the Weather Service warned of a strong shower over Catalina Island.

"Expect additional storm cells to develop across the area overnight, bringing periods of brief heavy rain," Kaplan said.

"Occasional lightning and variable gusty winds to 40 mph near thunderstorms" are possible, with rainfall of one-tenth of an inch or less -- though locally higher amounts near thunderstorms are possible, Kaplan said.

Light rain following a long dry spell can cause dirt, gas and oil on roadways to combine for slippery conditions, Kaplan said.

By early evening, the storm is expected to move to the east and the Southland can expect wind instead of rain, Meier told The Times.

"Once the sun goes down, we're pretty much in the clear," she said.

Wind gusts in the mountains could reach 50 mph tonight, while the Los Angeles Basin will have winds up to 20 mph, Meier said.

Along the Los Angeles County coast, the water temperature was 60-66 degrees, with waves running 4-6 feet and expected to build to 6-8 feet later today, according to the NWS. Some sets may be up to 10 feet. A NWS high surf advisory will be in effect until 10 a.m. Sunday.

A fisherman in a wetsuit gathering bait off a jetty in Marina del Rey about 2:30 a.m. was pulled out to sea in rough conditions but was able to cling to a buoy until lifeguards plucked him from the water.

The man, who was taken to a hospital to be checked out, apparently suffered a head injury.

Sunday is to be mostly sunny and windy, with highs in the mid 60s to low 70s, and overnight lows in the mid 40s to low 50s, according to the Weather Service.


Load Comments