Southern California’s first significant rain of the season could threaten residents near recently burned areas in the San Gabriel and San Bernardino mountains, forecasters warned Saturday.

A flash flood watch from the National Weather Service prompted the Yucaipa Fire Department to issue an evacuation warning effective 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. for people living near areas burned by the Apple and El Dorado fires, according to Cal Fire’s San Bernardino unit.

The storm that moved into the region Friday could cause debris flow, officials said.

“Scattered showers will continue thru this morning, with downpours likely under the heavier shower bursts,” the Weather Service said Saturday. “It will also be blustery with winds gusting around 25 mph. Expect rain slick roads, with snow likely at elevations above 4500-5000′.”

Just after 12 p.m., NWS reported lightning on the western part of the San Bernardino Mountains.

“Remember, when thunder roars head indoors!” the agency said in a tweet.

Forecasters expect a second storm Saturday night and Sunday.

Precipitation totals for both storms will range between .10 and 50 inches, possibly reaching 1 inch in the foothills and mountains, NWS said.

“Some potential impacts with these storms include slippery roadways, wintry driving conditions in the mountains as well as limited mud and debris flows in and around the recent burn areas,” the Weather Service said.

The cold and wet conditions come after California experienced three consecutive months of record-breaking heat and massive fires.


By Kelley Wheeler

Kelley Wheeler is a Metro reporter covering political issues and general assignments. A second-generation journalist, worked with all major news outlet, she holds a vast expeirience. Kelley is a graduate of USC with degrees in journalism and English literature. She is a recipient of Yale’s Poynter Fellowship in Journalism.

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