Heavy rain, winds hit Friday commuters

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SAN DIEGO - The second in a series of winter storms is expected to batter San Diego County Friday, bringing downpours that could again lead to flooding, plus heavy mountain snow, potentially damaging winds and thunderstorms.

The storms prompted the National Weather Service to issue a slew of warnings and advisories for various parts of the county.

A winter storm warning for the mountains will remain in effect from until 6 a.m. Saturday. Elevations as low as 5,000 feet may see 3 to 7 inches of snow, 6 to 12 inches could accumulate between 5,500 and 6,000 feet, 1 to 1 1/2 feet could blanket higher peaks.

Heavy rainfall with amounts that could exceed an inch per hour at times and thunderstorms in some areas may lead to flooding. A flash flood watch for areas other than the deserts will run from 7 a.m. through this evening.

Live Radar: Rain moves through San Diego County

Roadway flooding and other hazards are being reported in various areas around San Diego County:

In the city of San Diego, storm-related closures include Avenida Del Rio at Camino de la Reina in Mission Valley, La Media Road at Airway Road in Otay Mesa and the 2000 block of Saturn Boulevard in Palm City, according to police.

Lemon Crest Drive in Lakeside is closed between Wintergardens Boulevard and Riverview Avenue, as is Quarry Road between state Route 125 and Lakeview Avenue in Spring Valley, according to the county Department of Public Works.

The California Highway Patrol is reporting that a large tree has fallen onto Harbison Canyon Road and is blocking the entire roadway near East Noakes Street in the Harbison Canyon area east of El Cajon.

Rainfall amounts expected Friday include 1.18 inches in San Diego; 1.42 in the Miramar area; 1.46 in Oceanside; 1.78 in Borrego Springs; 2.09 in Escondido; 2.15 in Ramona; 2.28 in Alpine; 4.46 in Julian; 4.62 on Mount Laguna; and 5.24 on Palomar Mountain, according to the weather service.

Read More: Strong storms bring high surf warning

A high wind warning urging desert dwellers to prepare for sustained wind speeds of 25 to 45 miles per hour winds with gusts that could top 65 mph will remain in effect until 10 p.m. Saturday. A similar warning calling for winds of 15 to 30 mph with gusts of 45 to 60 mph along the coast and in the valleys will extend from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m Friday.

Forecasters said the winds may be strong enough to cause structural damage, topple trees or power lines, blow debris onto roadways and make for hazardous driving conditions.

Read More: Mount Laguna residents prepare for snow

The storms will also lead to problems at the beaches, such as strong rip currents and waves big enough to sweep beachgoers off jetties and rocks or damage piers. Surf of 8 to 12 feet with sets to 16 feet is expected through Saturday, then will lower somewhat over the weekend before ramping back up to 8 to 12 feet again on Monday, according to the NWS.

A high surf warning will remain in effect through 10 p.m. Tuesday.

A break between storms is expected Saturday, but the next and possibly strongest in the series of storms will arrive Sunday.

Forecasters said the third storm would bring rain to most areas and snow only on the highest mountain during the day Sunday. The snow level is expected to fall to as low as 4,000 feet Sunday night through Monday.

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