Los Angeles

Threat of Strong Thunderstorm Prompts Flash Flood Watch

A flash flood watch was in effect for parts of Southern California on Friday, a day after mudslides triggered by downpours left drivers stranded in their cars and shut down the main freeway connecting Los Angeles and the Central Valley.

A strong and slow-moving thunderstorm could bring the possibility of flash flooding, along with gusty winds, hail and lightning, from Santa Barbara County to Los Angeles County.

The cutoff low pressure area will keep the clouds and humidity around, and lead to another round of thunderstorms that will be centered over the mountain and desert areas, NBC4 meteorologist Crystal Egger said.

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood watch from noon to 8 p.m. for the mountains of Los Angeles and Ventura counties, as well as the Antelope Valley.

Rain could fall at a rate of more than two inches per hour, bringing an increased danger for mud and debris flows in recent burn areas, the NWS said.

On Thursday, flash flooding pushed boulders, mud and debris onto freeways, covering roads in a matter of seconds and forcing drivers in Castaic to camp overnight in their vehicles. Drivers said the 5 Freeway was covered in about 30 seconds.

Hundreds of vehicles were stuck in mudslides Thursday. The 5 Freeway, 14 Freeway and Route 58 were affected by the evening's storms. California Highway Patrol Lt. Sven Miller said 115 cars and 75 trucks are stuck on the highway between the towns of Mojave and Tehachapi.

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