Heavy rain and severe thunderstorms across San Diego County

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Heavy rains and thunderstorms showered San Diego County Tuesday afternoon.

The National Weather Service issued “severe weather warning” for air to ground and air to water lightning strikes at the coast. This was in effect until 5:00 p.m.

At approximately 2:45 p.m., there was significant lightning strikes in various beach areas. Lifeguards on City of San Diego beaches immediately began moving people out of the water and urged them to stay out of the water until at least 5 p.m.

The San Diego County Water Authority also requested that residents turned off any irrigation systems before, during and after the severe weather.

Outdoor irrigation is prohibited for at least 48 hours following rainfall.

By state law, it’s illegal to irrigate landscapes during measurable rainfall and for 48 hours afterward. As a practical matter, irrigation systems can be left off for much longer after a significant rain event.

Outdoor watering accounts for more than half of a typical household’s water use in California, and it has become a focal point for water conservation efforts as the drought extends into a fourth consecutive year.

Water conserved by residents and businesses will be stored in local reservoirs in case dry conditions continue into 2016 and beyond.

California faces some of the most severe drought conditions on record, with snowpack levels in the Sierra Nevada at just 5 percent of normal on April 1.

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