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Rain Brings Power Outages

Weather: A Pacific storm lands in the Southland, hitting some parts of Ventura County with more than 2 inches.


A Pacific storm formed in the Gulf of Alaska dumped more than 2 inches of rain in parts of Ventura County on Monday but sprayed most of Orange and Los Angeles counties only long enough to slick roads and spin wheels.

Power outages abounded in Ventura County, much of which got more than an inch of rain. But though at least 20 accidents occurred on highways there, in Los Angeles County, more than 353 accidents were reported to the California Highway Patrol during a seven-hour stretch.

The cold front was the second part of a weather system that came through Southern California over the weekend, National Weather Service officials said.

"That one cleared the atmosphere out, so this one was much more intense," said Bill Hoffer, a meteorologist with the weather service in Oxnard. "It just had more energy when it came down from Alaska."

In Orange County, the rain was intermittent, causing a few fender-benders and minor flooding before clearing late in the evening.

Snow levels dropped to about 7,000 feet, and forecasters said they expected the storm to leave 1 to 3 inches of snow by today.

Meteorologist Curt Kaplan said the storm brought the first significant rain of the season, which began July 1.

In the San Fernando Valley, the rain may have been responsible for a power outage that affected 3,000 customers, mostly in Encino and Woodland Hills, a spokesman for the Department of Water and Power said.

The storm also whipped up winds in the afternoon that knocked down at least two power lines in the city of Ventura, said police Lt. Bryan Roberts. As night fell, power outages there shut down several traffic lights, and malfunctioning railroad crossing arms on California 118 west of Moorpark backed up traffic for miles in both directions.

"We've been hopping," CHP Sgt. Randy Klucker said. "The roads have been difficult, and there's a fair amount of traffic because of the holiday weekend. People are trying to get home."

The storm, which was expected to bring showers through the night, should have cleared the area by this morning, according to the National Weather Service. Dry conditions are expected to last through the weekend.

The forecast through Wednesday is for clear skies, winds gusting to 15-20 mph and temperatures from the mid-40s to mid-60s, said Joe Beguhl, a meteorologist with Weather Central, which does forecasts for The Times.


Times staff writer David Haldane and Times wire services contributed to this report.

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