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'It'll Pack a Punch': Weekend Storm to Sweep SD County

It’s going to be a wet winter weekend in San Diego as the second storm in a series of three sweeps the county, bringing with it heavy rain, strong winds, and even some snow.

“Look out for Saturday!” said NBC 7 meteorologist Dagmar Midcap. “The storm is slow moving and moisture-intensive, with strong winds. It’ll pack a punch.”

Midcap said Saturday’s storm would move in overnight and continue for most of the day. The storm has the potential to bring another inch to an inch-and-a-half of rain to the region, plus snow showers to mountain ranges above 5,500 feet.

According to Midcap, the storm will be at its most unstable at around 4 p.m. 

As of 7 a.m. Saturday, showers had started moving through the county. NBC 7’s Brooke Landau said the rain was heavy at times but the brunt of the storm was expected to hit from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., and likely continue overnight.

Meanwhile, NBC 7 Meteorologist Sheena Parveen said Saturday’s rain would be heavier than the first storm in this series, which hit the county Thursday. That storm brought between a half-inch to an inch of rain to the region, plus thunder and lightning strike.

Thunderstorms are also possible Saturday, likely in the afternoon and evening.

Parveen said this storm would bring gusty winds to San Diego’s mountains and deserts, with possible gusts of up to 55 mph.

To that end, the National Weather Service issued a wind advisory in effect from 2 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday along San Diego’s coasts, valleys, mountains, and deserts.

Just before 10:30 a.m., the NWS issued an aviation weather warning for San Diego International Airport for wind gusts 30 knots or greater, in effect through 5 p.m.

The NWS also issued a beach hazard statement from 4 a.m. Saturday through 11 a.m. Monday for high surf at local beaches expected to peak between 5 and 7 feet. Sets would likely be even higher along shorelines south of Encinitas.

The storm also prompted a flash flood watch, in effect Saturday morning through the evening, the NWS said.

By 10 a.m., the NWS had added a flash flood warning for the San Diego River at Fashion Valley, an area notorious for flooding during big storms.

“The river will rise this afternoon and evening,” the warning read. “Do not drive vehicles through flooded roadways.”

The NWS said heavy rainfall – expected to peak between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. – could cause flooding at Fashion Valley Road, Avenida Del Rio, Camino Del Este, Camino Camino de la Reina; Mission Center Road. Water flows into the parking lot at Fashion Valley are also likely.

If the river rises into flooding the Fashion Valley Transit Center will close, the NWS said. 

Parveen said the rain would taper off quite a bit Sunday, but there is still a chance for a few light showers amid ongoing cloudy conditions.

The County Department of Environmental Health on Friday extended a water contact closure to include Imperial Beach, Silver Strand State Beach and Coronado shorelines. The closure already included the Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge and Border Field State Park.

On Monday, the third storm in this series is expected to arrive, with rain throughout the day, possibly lingering into Tuesday and Wednesday.

Photo Credit: Monica Garske
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Source: NBC San Diego

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