1st in series of storms brings rain to Southland

Local news

The first in a series of storms that will bring rain and snow to Southern California through the Christmas holiday arrived overnight.

The winter storm is expected to get stronger as it moves south, bringing periods of heavy rain in Ventura Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

Forecasters are calling for 1.5 to 3 inches of rain to fall along the coastal and valley locations through Sunday.

Residents in the mountains and foothills can expected 3 to 6 inches of rain, according to the National Weather Service.

The heaviest showers are predicted to fall on the area Thursday and Friday before the second system arrives over the weekend.

Snow levels will start off on the high side, above 8,000 feet through Thursday.

Those levels will plummet to 4,500 feet by Friday, and drop even further to 4,000 feet by Sunday, according to the Weather Service.

Drivers are reminded that chains will be required to travel on mountain roads.

Officials will also have to keep an eye on the 5 Freeway in case snow falls through the Grapevine area over the weekend.

While the rain is a welcome sight for the drought-stricken region, officials are concerned about heavy downpours causing mud and rockslides in recent burn areas.

Evacuation warnings have been issued for residents near the Bond Fire and El Dorado Fire burn areas.  

The orders for residents in the Silverado Canyon, Modjeska Canyon and Williams Canyon areas are currently voluntary and begin at 8 a.m. Thursday.

In addition, a flood advisory is in place for western L.A. County, including the San Fernando Valley, Santa Clarita, the Santa Monica Mountains and Malibu, the NWS tweeted. The advisory will remain in place until 12:30 a.m. Friday.

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