Tuesday, October 27, 2009

'Strong to damaging' winds to batter L.A. through Wednesday morning; cable snaps on Bay Bridge

From the LA TIMES

The National Weather Service issued an alert this evening warning of “strong to damaging" northerly winds in Southern California that will continue through Wednesday morning.

Wind gusts topping 50 mph swept into Los Angeles County this afternoon, causing scattered power outages from downed power lines in the San Fernando and San Gabriel valleys.

In the Bay Area, a cable snapped on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, hitting three vehicles. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the cable was on a newly built span of the bridge's upper deck. Caltrans engineers were checking the structural integrity of the bridge, according to the newspaper.

TV footage showed that wind knocked down a large sign at a Jack in the Box restaurant in North Hollywood, and that police had blocked off part of Saticoy Street because of downed power lines.

According to the weather service, strong gusts hit Malibu, Van Nuys, Lancaster and other areas this afternoon.

Warnings were issued to boaters, and firefighters were placed on alert because the winds bring new fire dangers. There was a small fire this afternoon in the Sepulveda Pass that firefighters quickly contained.

In areas burned in the recent Station fire, the wind blew up large amounts of dust and debris.

--Shelby Grad, Rong-Gong Lin II, Andrew Blankstein