Southland rain expected to stay through weekend


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Parts of the Southland, such as Ventura County, saw heavy rainfall overnight and into the morning. The showers died down by afternoon, but it was expected to pick up again as we head into the evening hours.

According to the National Weather Service, Southern California can expect spurts of rain through Saturday morning, with the majority of rainfall expected in Los Angeles and Ventura counties.

NWS also says the latest weather system will bring 1/2 to 1 inch of rain to Los Angeles and Ventura counties and up to 2 1/2 inches in the foothills and local mountains. Snow levels will stay about 6500 feet Thursday and could lower to 6000 feet by Saturday.

The storm has brought cooler temperatures, forcing Southland residents to bundle up and break out umbrellas.

"I like it. It's a little different from all the heat that's been going on lately," said Kevin Lowe, who was visiting from Minneapolis.

Driving conditions can be dangerous because of slick roads. According to the California Highway Patrol, 166 collisions were reported in the Los Angeles area Jan. 17. One week and one storm later, that number rose to 501 accidents Thursday.

"What it tells me is that a lot of people are just forgetting some of the generalized rules, just to slow down," said Sylvia Vargas with the CHP.

Traffic was backed up during the morning commute. There were several crashes, including one that happened on the southbound 110 Freeway at Channel Street at about midnight. The vehicle slid off the road and down an embankment. Two people were injured. The California Highway Patrol is trying to determine if rain was a factor.

The power grid is also having some problems because of the wet weather. Nearly 5,000 SoCal Edison customers lost power in the morning, with the hardest hit areas in San Fernando and Lakewood. The Department of Water and Power said nearly 3,200 customers lost power. Both companies are working to restore power to all customers.

The storm could linger through Sunday and may put a damper on weekend plans.

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