LOS ANGELES — A wet prewinter storm dumped as much as 7 inches of rain on parts of Southern California over the weekend, with several more inches expected to fall in the days leading up to Christmas.
Rainfall that began Saturday morning continued relentlessly throughout yesterday. It wasn’t expected to let up until sometime today, then resume tomorrow and Wednesday, said Stuart Seto of the National Weather Service. After a brief break at the end of the week, more rain was likely to arrive Christmas Day, Seto said.
A flash-flood warning was in effect for parts of Southern California, particularly mountain areas burned in recent years by wildfires.
The rain was believed responsible for scores of accidents, including one in the city of Industry, east of Los Angeles, that critically injured a 6-year-old girl.
Some residents of La Canada Flintridge were extra wary of the rain. More than 40 homes in the hillside city just north of Los Angeles were damaged or destroyed by a mudslide in February.
In Northern California, the San Francisco Bay area caught only a portion of a powerful storm system, the National Weather Service said, although the weather was blamed for a series of scattered power outages in area.
Moderate to heavy rainfall fell on San Francisco early yesterday, but by late morning most of the precipitation had moved east.
A spokesman for Pacific Gas and Electric said about 3,300 homes and businesses in the San Jose and Gilroy area were without power early yesterday afternoon.
Despite light weekend traffic, the rain triggered scores of fender-bender accidents throughout the Los Angeles area, according to the California Highway Patrol, including more than 40 yesterday morning. In Industry, rain was suspected as the cause of an accident in which a car carrying four members of a family hit a tree. A 6-year-old girl was hospitalized in critical condition and her father, mother, and 15-month-old sister suffered lesser injuries, said the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
The real impact of the storm could come later in the week, Seto said, when hillsides are saturated with rain and the possibility of mudslides and flash floods increases.
Rainfall throughout the region ranged from 2 to 4 inches in the Los Angeles area to as much as 7 inches in some mountain areas.