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High winds expected to increase in Santa Clarita Valley this evening

70 power poles down in Antelope Valley as heavy winds buffet Southern California

Posted: May 23, 2012 10:04 a.m.
Updated: May 23, 2012 10:04 a.m.
 


Your potted plant may have been knocked over due to strong winds Tuesday night. But by Thursday morning, your front-yard tree could be in the neighbor's yard.

National Weather Service forecasters say strong winds that have buffeted the Santa Clarita Valley since Tuesday are expected to intensify over the next 24 hours.

A wind advisory issued for the Santa Clarita Valley until 6 p.m. today will be upgraded to a "high wind warning" in effect until 6 a.m. Thursday, said weather specialist Stuart Seto.

Winds averaging between 20 and 30 miles per hour since Tuesday, gusting to 45, are expected to intensify from 25 to 30 on average, gusting to 60 miles per hour, Seto said.

"If you're driving, just beware of strong crosswinds," he said, "especially, if you're going through passes and canyons."

The Antelope Valley was particularly hard hit by wind last night and this morning.

Gusts were clocked at 65 mph in some areas, and forecasters said isolated gusts of up to 80 mph are possible over some mountains.

Fifty power poles were knocked down by fierce winds late Tuesday in Lancaster. Southern California Edison said it could take days to replace the poles, but only four homes lost power.

Forecasters said motorists should use caution, especially in desert areas because of blowing sand, and that strong winds can knock down trees and large signs.

Lt. Mark Hershey of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station said the department has received no recent reports of trees down or of traffic collisions due to the wind.

But, he noted, "My potted plant fell over."

The Los Angeles County Fire Department reported no wind-related emergency calls early Wednesday morning, a spokesman said.

Incidents of branches breaking off trees and falling onto roadways have been reported throughout Santa Clarita Valley.

Residents should also be prepared for power outages Wednesday night, Seto said.

"They might want to freeze bags of water as a precaution," he said.

Temperatures are expected to drop by 10 degrees Friday to the mid-60's.

"There's a low front coming in from the north, with drizzle," Seto said. "By the weekend, you'll see temperatures return to the mid-80's."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

jholt@the-signal.com
661-287-5527

 

 

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