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Late season storm hits California

Posted: April 25, 2014 10:15 a.m.
Updated: April 25, 2014 10:12 a.m.
 

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A late-season Pacific storm brought rain and snow to California on Friday, though it was not expected to make much of a dent in the state's ongoing drought.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory for the Sierra Nevada through 5 a.m. Saturday, with an additional 4 to 9 inches of snow expected. Motorists were being advised to carry chains and expect delays. Wind gusts of up to 60 mph were expected.

Forecasters were also warning of rain showers and snow by Friday evening in parts of Southern California, particularly across the northern slopes of the Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara county mountains.

Light accumulations were expected on heavily-traveled Interstate 5 near the Grapevine.

Meteorologists said a winter weather advisory would be in effect through Saturday morning, with 3 inches to 6 inches of snow expected and snow levels lowering to elevations of 4,000 feet.

Winds were forecast to add to the problems, with powerful gusts sweeping the high-desert Antelope Valley north of Los Angeles at speeds up to 65 mph. "Expect blowing dust and sand which will cause visibility to lower near zero at times," the National Weather Service said.

Elsewhere, light rain was falling in parts of the San Francisco Bay Area during the morning commute Friday and more light rain, accompanied by a possible thunderstorm, was expected through the day. The clouds and the chance for rain will remain through Sunday, forecasters said. About a tenth of an inch was expected in San Francisco.

The precipitation, while good news for the state, was unlikely to offer much relief from the ongoing drought.

"I don't think the system is going to improve things a whole lot," National Weather Service forecaster Bob Benjamin told the San Francisco Chronicle.

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