Long-awaited winter storm brings rain to Southern California

Local news

The Southland received some-much needed rain as a winter storm drenched the region Wednesday.

Showers arrived in the Los Angeles and Orange county areas later in the morning, with lightning detected in some storm cells offshore, according to the National Weather Service.

Lightning strikes near Seal Beach prompted the brief closure of the beach and pier around 10 a.m., the city’s Police Department reported.

The rain is expected to linger through about 4 p.m., making for a wet afternoon commute.

Forecasters called for up to a quarter-inch of rain for some coastal and valley locations. Mountain and foothill areas could see as much as a half-inch of rain.

Higher rain totals are possible in areas that may be hit by thunderstorms, according to the National Weather Service.

Drivers are warned to be on the lookout for areas of flooding.

Cold temperatures are also expected to return with Wednesday’s storm.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has issued cold-weather alerts through Thursday for the Antelope Valley and Los Angeles County mountains.

“Children, the elderly, and people with disabilities or special medical needs are especially vulnerable during cold weather. Extra precaution should be taken to ensure they don’t get too cold when they are outside,” said Los Angeles County Health Officer Muntu Davis.

“There are places where people can go to stay warm, such as shelters or other public facilities. We also want to remind people not to use stoves, barbeques or ovens to heat their homes due to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning,” Davis said.

Snow levels are expected to remain above 5,000 feet with 2 to 4 inches of snow possible above the 6,000-foot mark.

Drier, warmer conditions are expected to return Thursday.

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