The Latest: Southern California storm drops hail, heavy rain
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on storms sweeping through Southern California (all times local):
Hail and heavy rain fell as powerful thunderstorms swept into Southern California, flooding roads and snarling rush hour traffic.
Authorities on Wednesday evacuated the Santa Monica Pier and beaches around greater Los Angeles because of lightning strikes.
The cold low-pressure system prompted the National Weather Service to issue flash flood watches for large portions of the region. Some areas could see more than 3 inches (7.6 centimeters) of rain.
Motorists are urged to use caution in the mountains, where snow is falling.
The storms will move out Thursday, when warmer, drier conditions are expected to return.
Days after high temperature records were set, wintry weather has brought rain, wind and snow to Southern California.
Wet conditions made for a slippery Thursday commute in Los Angeles while heavy flooding stranded drivers in desert areas to the east.
Flash flood watches are in effect for inland communities, with winter storm warnings up for the mountains.
Local ski resorts rejoiced at the forecast of several inches of snow.
About 2 inches (6 centimeters) of rain fell in the San Diego area Tuesday and more is expected.
Voluntary evacuation warnings are in place for canyon communities of Orange and Riverside counties where mudslides are possible along wildfire burn scars.
Sunday and Monday saw summerlike temperatures into the 90s (above 33 Celsius), but highs on Wednesday will stay in the low 60s (about 16 Celsius).