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Respite From Storms Expected In San Diego County

A rainbow shines over La Jolla during intermittent sunshine between storms, Jan. 7, 2016.
Milan Kovacevic
A rainbow shines over La Jolla during intermittent sunshine between storms, Jan. 7, 2016.

San Diego County could see some relief Friday from the series of El Niño-driven storms that caused widespread damage, flooded roads and contributed to numerous traffic problems, but another low-pressure system is likely to bring more wintry weather over the weekend.

This week's series of storms brought rain, hail, high surf, strong winds, floods and even a tornado warning. As of 8 p.m. Thursday the National Weather Service reported more than 5 inches of rain in Poway, 2.78 inches at Lindbergh Field and 4.8 inches in Kearny Mesa fell over a 72 hour period. We want to know how the storm impacted you and if you were prepared.

The wet and windy conditions throughout the region are expected to weaken Friday morning and a brief respite from the storms is expected Friday and early Saturday, although potentially damaging surf sets of 10 to 14 feet are forecast at the beaches through Friday night, and the National Weather Service has issued a high surf warning.

"Lingering showers over San Diego County will gradually decrease throughout this morning, tapering off finally by early this afternoon over the San Diego County mountains," according to the weather service.

In a 72-hour period ending at 8 p.m. Thursday, automated gauges collected 7.46 inches of rain on Mt. Woodson; 6.31 inches in Poway; 5.88 inches in Julian; 5.61 inches at Henshaw Dam; 5.51 inches at Lake Cuyamaca; 5.43 inches in Ramona; 5.23 inches at Miramar Lake; 5.16 inches at Camp Elliott; and 5.05 inches in Descanso, according to preliminary National Weather Service data.

Numerous locales elsewhere in the region reported less than five inches of rain, including the San Diego Country Estates with 4.84 inches of rain; Kearny Mesa with 4.82 inches; Santee with 4.17 inches; Alpine with 4.04 inches; 3.23 inches at Fashion Valley; and 2.78 inches at Lindbergh Field.

The storms brought varying amounts of snowfall to the East County mountains, including 12 to 15 inches on Mount Laguna, about seven inches on Palomar Mountain, an inch or so in Pine Valley and a light dusting in Descanso, according to meteorologists.

The spate of wet and windy conditions caused extensive damage in parts of the county. Uprooted or snapped off trees damaged a couple cars and roofs in Sabre Springs, antennas were bent and roof shingles were blown off in Vista, wind damaged a garage in Bonsall and extensive flooding occurred on a golf course near the San Diego River, according to the weather service.

The wind, rain and snow also contributed to crashes along county roadways. The California Highway Patrol logged around 260 accidents between midnight and 9:30 p.m. Thursday. That compares with around 140 wrecks on an average "good weather" day.

Although San Diego County will get a break from the storms, another low- pressure system is just around the corner.

"After a break in the weather Saturday, another low-pressure system will bring more precipitation Saturday night through Sunday, although this system will not bring as significant precipitation amounts as the last systems that passed through our region."

Perhaps this signals the end of our recent spate of nasty weather?

Posted by Ethan Gibney on Thursday, January 7, 2016
A timelapse video shows a rainbow appearing over the San Diego region, Jan. 7, 2016.

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