Holiday traffic plus winter storm creates dangerous driving conditions

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Gusty winds in the San Diego County mountains preceded significant rain showers throughout Southern California Wednesday, with a cold storm expected to make road conditions challenging for holiday traveler through the end of the week.

There might be a break in the rainfall on Thursday morning before the second front of the storm moves through the region on Thursday afternoon, but any break will be brief, the meteorologist said.

A flash flood warning will last until Thursday evening for coastal areas, the inland valleys and the mountains.

Precipitation totals through Friday could reach 4 inches in the mountains, 2.5 inches in the inland valleys, 1.5 inches in coastal areas and less than two-thirds of an inch in the deserts, Miller said.

A winter storm warning will be in effect until 10 p.m. Friday in the mountains above 3,000 feet.

“If you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food and water in your vehicle in case of emergency,” NWS officials warned.

Snow levels will remain above 4,500 feet through Wednesday evening, then drop to about 3,500 feet by Thursday night, Miller said.

Mount Laguna, Palomar Mountain and Cuyamaca Mountain could get up to 18 inches of snow at their highest peaks before the storm system makes its exit by late Friday night, Miller said.

Snow levels are expected to bottom out at 3,000 feet on Friday morning before gradually rising as the storm leaves the region, the meteorologist said.

Thunderstorms will also be possible Thursday morning through Friday morning everywhere except the deserts, forecasters said.

Elevated surf reached between 3-6 feet Wednesday morning and waves could reach as high as 7 feet Thursday and Friday before a beach hazards statement expires Friday morning.

High temperatures Wednesday reached 61 degrees near the coast and inland, 60 in the western valleys, 57 near the foothills, 52 in the mountains and 69 in the deserts.

Categories: Local San Diego News, Traffic & Accidents