LOS ANGELES, CA – Santa Ana winds are blowing across the Southland again, creating dangerous driving conditions and the threat of downed trees or power lines.
The National Weather Service issued a wind advisory in effect until 4 p.m. Friday for the Los Angeles County Mountains, Santa Clarita and San Fernando Valleys, Santa Monica Mountains and the Coastal Area, including the downtown.
Wind gusts of up to 40 to 50 mph battered parts of the county Thursday, but the strongest wind gusts were expected Friday morning. Although wind advisories are due to expire at 4 p.m. Friday, forecasters warned that current conditions show the possibility of winds continuing into Saturday morning.
“Therefore, it may be necessary to extend the advisories, but will wait until (Friday) to make this call,” according to the NWS.
Forecasters said earlier that mountain and high valley areas are likely to have the strongest winds, with gusts of up to 55mph, while other locations will have winds of 30-50mph .
In Orange County, a wind advisory will be in effect until 10 p.m. Friday for inland areas and the Santa Ana Mountains and Foothills. Forecasters said areas could see winds of 15mph to 25mph, with gusts of 45 to 55mph.
Forecasters have urged motorists in all council areas to be extra careful when driving, “especially if they are driving a large vehicle”.
“Gusty winds could blow around unsecured objects,” according to the NWS. “Tree branches could be cut down and some power outages could result.”
Southern California Edison crews will be on alert during the wind event, and the utility reminded customers that outage information is available on its website at SCE.com and on Facebook and Twitter. SCE noted that the winds are not expected to be as high as last week’s Santa Ana event, which saw gusts of up to 90 mph in some mountain and foothill areas, knocking down trees that caused falling power lines.
The utility recommended that residents of wind-prone areas take precautions to prepare for possible outages, including:
— check emergency supplies, such as a battery-powered radio, flashlight and batteries;
— securing temporary structures, garden furniture, tents or other objects that can be carried away by the wind;
— avoid downed power lines;
— do not attempt to remove broken tree limbs or branches that may have touched power lines;
— use caution when driving and treat intersections with inoperative traffic lights as four-way stops;
— use flashlights instead of candles in case of breakdown.
A full list of safety tips is available at sce.com/safety-.
city news service