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Pacific Storm Drenches San Diego Area; CHP Reports 291 Crashes

Between midnight and 4 p.m., the California Highway Patrol logged 291 crashes.

Updated at 6:10 p.m.

A temperate winter storm brought widespread rainfall to the San Diego area Friday, ushering in a spate of cloudy skies and wet conditions expected to last through the weekend.

The low-pressure system out of the eastern Pacific pulled moist subtropical air into Southern California, resulting in showers that began late Thursday, according to the National Weather Service.

Up to about an inch of precipitation likely will fall throughout the county through tonight ahead of cooler temperatures and more scattered cloudbursts continuing into Monday, meteorologists predicted.

By early this evening, most areas had gotten anywhere from a little over one-tenth of an inch of moisture to nearly three-quarters of an inch. The highest amounts recorded over a 24-hour period ending shortly before 5:30 p.m. were on Otay Mountain, where 0.99 of an inch accumulated, and in Campo, with 0.88, the weather service reported.

The downpours, meanwhile, led to some typical rainy-day problems on the region's wet roadways. Between midnight and 4 p.m., the California Highway Patrol logged 291 crashes. By comparison, the CHP generally responds to 50-75 accidents on local freeways and rural roads over an entire day of fair weather.

The unsettled atmospheric system also could let loose with up to several inches of snow above the 4,500-foot level Sunday and early Monday, NWS forecaster Mike Watkins said.

-City News Service

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