The Latest: Wind-closed California highway reopens

RENO, Nev. (AP) — The Latest on winter storm packing high winds and heavy snow blowing into the Sierra and Lake Tahoe area: (all times local):

10:05 p.m.

Authorities say traffic is running smoothly on a highway in Southern California that was closed after gusts downed power lines ahead of a winter storm.

U.S. Highway 6 was closed for several hours Monday afternoon south of Yosemite National Park near Bishop, California.

Winds ahead of the storm also played havoc on other roads.

There were no immediate reports of serious injuries after a tractor trailer flipped on U.S. Highway 395 near Pearsonville in the Sierra, about 150 miles (241 kilometers) north of Los Angeles.

And some drivers found themselves crawling blindly along the road because of blowing dust in the desert area of Barstow, northeast of LA.

Wind is also driving a large fire and some evacuations near Santa Barbara.

The winds will be followed Tuesday by rain with snowfall in the mountains.


12:50 p.m.

Dangerous winds in the Sierra toppled a semi-trailer truck, downed power lines and closed a stretch of highway in Southern California ahead of a winter storm that’s expected to bring up to 2 feet (60 centimeters) of snow to the top of the mountains around Lake Tahoe by mid-week.

U.S. Highway 6 was expected to remain closed for a few hours Monday afternoon due to downed power lines south of Yosemite National Park near Bishop, California where winds were gusting up to 58 mph (93 kph).

A wind gust of 94 mph (151 kph) was reported further north Monday morning at Mammoth Lakes Airport.


12:20 p.m.

Winds were gusting in excess of 90 mph (140 kph) in the central Sierra on Monday ahead of a storm expected to bring up to 2 feet (60 centimeters) of snow to mountain tops around Lake Tahoe by the middle of the week and create a chance of snow as far south as the mountains near Las Vegas.

The National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning for the Tahoe area effective from 4 p.m. Tuesday to 4 p.m. Thursday. Eight to 18 inches (20 to 45 centimeters) of snow was possible at lake level with winds gusting as high as 60 mph (96 kph).

A high wind advisory was upgraded to a high wind warning in the central Sierra including California’s Mono County near the Nevada line, where sustained winds of 25 to 40 mph (40 to 64 kph) were gusting over 80 mph (128 kph). A gust of 94 mph (151 kph) was reported Monday morning at Mammoth Lakes Airport south of Yosemite National Park, the weather service said.

The worst conditions are expected around Lake Tahoe late Tuesday through midday Wednesday.

Categories: California News