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Ventura County

Powerful Storm Expected to Roll Through County Today

Weather: An inch of rain is likely along the coast, 2 inches in the mountains. Temperatures will drop.


Sunny skies and warm temperatures made for a near perfect post-Thanksgiving shopping day, but the pleasant weather is expected to come to and end by noon today.

A powerful Pacific storm that has been moving slowly down the coast from Alaska should finally hit Ventura County today, bringing cooler temperatures and up to an inch of rain along the coast and nearly 2 inches in the mountains, according to the National Weather Service.

The heaviest rain will occur this afternoon and evening, before tapering off Sunday morning, weather service spokesman Eric Hilgendorf said.

Temperatures today and Sunday are expected to drop into the low to mid-40s at night with daytime highs in the low to mid-60s.

Snow levels could drop below 6,000 feet in some mountain locations by Sunday night but will mostly remain above 7,500 feet, Hilgendorf said.

The latest storm will be the third of the rainy season, which started in July, and could be the biggest yet, officials said. That is good news to farmers, who are pleased with the amount of rainfall so far in Ventura County.

"This season is shaping up well," said Bob Pinkerton, past president of the Ventura County Farm Bureau and an avocado and citrus farmer near Santa Paula. "It's hasn't been too cool or too hot, so I'm a happy camper."

By noon Friday, the National Weather Service had issued a heavy surf warning that would stay in effect at least through today. Waves from 5 to 7 feet were expected, with occasional larger sets.

It won't be a good weekend to be on the water, said David Delano of Vessel Assist in Ventura Harbor.

"It has been really rocking and rolling," Delano said of the surf beyond the harbor's breakwater. "It wouldn't be a good weekend to go out. I shouldn't say that, because we make our living towing boats, but I don't want anyone to get hurt."

California Highway Patrol officers will continue heavy patrols of Ventura County freeways through the weekend. From Wednesday at 6 p.m. through Friday afternoon officers arrested six motorists for suspicion of driving under the influence, CHP Sgt. Doug Howell said. Twenty collisions were reported during that period.

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