Storm hits Southland with rain, mountain snow

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LOS ANGELES (CNS) – A winter-like storm pushed through the Southland today, breaking a rainfall record in downtown Los Angeles while triggering some minor debris flows and creating some hazardous driving conditions, particularly in the mountains.

According to the National Weather Service, 1.10 inches of rain were recorded in downtown Los Angeles, breaking the record for the date of 0.84 inches, set in 1958.

“Scattered rain and snow showers will continue through Thursday with some snow on the major passes early Tuesday and Wednesday morning,” according to the NWS. “There is a slight chance of thunderstorms (Monday night) through Wednesday, including across coastal waters. Conditions will be dry and warmer Friday and through the weekend.”

Until then, however, rain is possible over the next few days, with snow levels dropping to about 4,000 feet Tuesday morning, potentially affecting motorists on the 5 Freeway through the Grapevine. According to the NWS, 6 to 12 inches of snow is expected between 4,000 and 6,000 feet, while 12 to 24 inches could fall at higher elevations, particularly in the San Gabriel Mountains.

Forecasters said the potential for the heaviest rain of the next few days will be Tuesday night into Wednesday.

The heavy downpours that doused the region Sunday and Monday prompted some mud flows, including one in the Hollywood Hills that sent several feet of mud against the back of a home on Westshire Drive. No injuries were reported and no mud went into the home, but it created a messy and treacherous situation.

A record rainfall rate for an April 5 was recorded Sunday at Sandberg in the L.A. County portion of the San Gabriels. The 0.51 inch recorded bested the 0.5 set in 1969.

The NWS warned that this week’s conditions may result in a wet commute in L.A. and Ventura counties, travel delays, rocks and boulders tumbling onto roadways, minor mud and debris flows in burn areas, and urban roadway flooding.

Accompanying the rain will be south winds gusting to between 45 and 55 mph.

In the San Gabriel Mountains in L.A. and Ventura counties, a winter storm warning will be in effect until 5 p.m. Tuesday.

The NWS urged people who have to drive in the mountains to keep an extra flashlight, food, and water in their vehicles.

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