Fierce winds continued to lash away at parts of the Southland Wednesday ahead of a new storm expected to bring the region some rain, snow at low elevations and more windy weather.
A high wind warning for the San Gabriel Mountains and Antelope Valley expired at midday, with forecasters saying winds were generally subsiding. Gusts of up to 53 mph were still blowing in areas such as Sandberg and Whitaker Peak early this afternoon, but the winds were still weaker than Tuesday. A high wind warning is issued when gusts reach 58 mph.
A less serious wind advisory will remain in effect until 8 p.m. for the Antelope Valley and Los Angeles County Mountains, but it could be extended, according to the National Weather Service.
“Models show winds continuing to subside some through the afternoon and early evening, although some localized gusty winds are still possible,” according to the NWS.
The high winds could still present the danger of churning sand and dust that can reduce visibility to zero for motorists, forecasters said.
Along the Southland coast, a coastal flood advisory will be in force until 10 a.m. Friday, and a beach hazard statement will be in effect through that afternoon.
“Elevated surf and strong rip currents will increase the risk of ocean drowning,” according to the NWS, which also warned of minor flooding, especially during morning high tide.
On Thursday, an area of low pressure out of the gulf of Alaska is expected to drop into Southern California, bringing light showers, snow at low elevations, and northerly winds that may gust at more than 50 mph, forecasters said. On Friday night and Saturday, moderate to strong Santa Ana winds are possible as high pressure builds into the Great Basin, they said.
The snow level is expected to start off at between 5,000 and 6,000 feet, dropping to 3,000 feet by Friday morning. Snow accumulation will be minimal.
“The combination of gusty winds, wet roads, and holiday traffic will lead to hazardous driving conditions Thursday night into Friday,” according to the NWS, which warned that snow and blowing snow could cause poor visibility in the mountains near The Grapevine.
The weather service also warned that there could be several hours of sub- freezing temperatures in some valley areas of Los Angeles and Ventura counties Saturday and Sunday. Especially vulnerable in such conditions are children, the elderly and the homeless.
Thursday’s temperatures are forecast to be a few degrees lower than Wednesday in many communities, still under partly cloudy skies. Another small temperature dip is expected Friday, also under cloudy skies. Saturday’s temperatures will be about the same, but in full sunshine this time.
Here are the latest temperatures and conditions around Southern California: