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California Winter Storm Brings Blizzard Warning, Power Outages

At a glance

  • A winter storm hit California, bringing unusual cold, strong winds and heavy snow.
  • The storm could dump up to 5 feet of snow in Big Bear and as much as 8 feet in Mount Baldy.
  • Southern coastal areas could face threats from heavy rain and flooding.
  • Parts of I-5 and I-80 were closed due to mudslides.
  • Winds could gust up to 80 mph in higher elevations.

The details

California Facing Unusual Winter Storm

The Associated Press reported that parts of California’s southern mountains region remained under a rare blizzard warning and more than 120,000 customers were without electricity Friday as a winter storm hit the state.

Three million Californians awoke to a winter storm warning as the storm that first rolled into the Golden State on Thursday continued to bring unusual cold, strong winds and heavy snow.

The National Weather Service in San Diego issued its first-ever blizzard warning for mountain areas including Big Bear, Lake Arrowhead and Wrightwood through Saturday.

The National Weather Service in Los Angeles also issued its own blizzard warning for the mountains of Los Angeles and Ventura counties.

Heavy Snow and Flooding

Heavy snow won’t be the only concern in California; southern coastal areas could face threats from heavy rain and flooding.

Mudslides closed Grapevine highway near Santa Clarita and parts of I-80 closed.

Parts of Interstate 5 near Santa Clarita, referred to as the Grapevine, were closed Friday morning due to a mudslide.

Parts of State Route 2 along Angeles Crest Highway were also closed Friday morning.

Truckers attempting to travel along parts of I-80 that were open Friday were being checked to make sure their tires were outfitted with the proper chains.

Mountain areas in Ventura County had received up to 3 inches of rain by Friday morning.

Snowfall and Wind Speeds

The winter storm could dump as much as 5 feet of snow in Big Bear, about two hours northeast of Los Angeles.

Sustained winds are expected to reach 25 to 35 mph, with gusts between 50 and 60 mph.

Snow could fall at elevations as low as 1,000 feet in Los Angeles County.

In higher elevations of the county and Ventura County to the north, winds could gust up to 80 mph, with 2 to 5 feet of snow above 4,000 feet and as much as 8 feet of snow in areas including Mount Baldy.

The greater Los Angeles area could see 2 to 4 inches of rain.

A large storm that swept coast to coast was expected to move out of the Northeast on Friday.

In Bangor, Maine, a winter weather advisory was in effect until noon Friday, with accumulations expected to reach between 4 and 7 inches.

Boston can expect highs approaching 40 degrees, with winds around 20 to 30 mph.

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