Rains, possible thunderstorms settle into SoCal

Photo by atomicjeep via Flickr Creative Commons

It looks like the rain won't be going away for SoCal anytime soon.

According to bulletins from the National Weather Service, rain and scattered thunderstorms came Saturday morning and are expected to continue through to at least Tuesday. Several hours of steady rain may give way to showers and possible thunderstorms Saturday night.

Southerly winds may increase to 15 or 25 mph, with 45 mph gusts. A wind advisory is in effect on Saturday.

The showers seem likely to peter off by Tuesday evening.

Meanwhile, SoCal mountaintops can expect a dusting of up to 16 inches of snow — at least those over 6,000 feet. Even the Santa Monica Mountains above the Malibu coast could see the white stuff, according to the National Weather Service.

The Pasadena Star News reports that the Pasadena Fire Department will offer sand and sandbags and sand to residents via at least two stations.

Fire safety officers will also be available to answer questions.

And in Arcadia, Santa Anita Park officials have postponed a $150,000 horse race scheduled for Sunday out of concern that the rains would soften the track, reports the Mercury News.

The storm is long past due, even by Southern California's high standards. Downtown L.A. has recorded only 5.22 inches since the start of the rain-year on July 1. That's nearly 7 1/2 inches below normal by this time.

And what does this mean for the L.A. Marathon on Sunday? Nothing good. High temperatures are expected to be in the mid-to-upper 50s — 12 to 18 degrees below normal.

Bonnie Bartling, a weather specialist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard, summed it up best to the L.A. Times: “Let’s just say I won’t be there, not even spectating."