SCV endures more heavy rainfall, snowfall in Grapevine causes closures

Fire officials respond to a vehicle rollover on Sierra Highway Monday afternoon. March 16, 2020. Bobby Block / The Signal.
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The Santa Clarita Valley endured another round of heavy rainfall Monday, which resulted in traffic collisions in the area and stalled traffic at the Grapevine with reports of snow.

A second storm made its way to the SCV and the rest of Southern California Monday morning, following warmer, yet wet conditions last week. 

“Right now we have a pretty good band of rain going through Santa Clarita and will generally continue into early tomorrow (Tuesday) morning,” said Kathy Hoxsie, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, on Monday. “As of tomorrow it will taper off, and we’re expecting that we will have scattered showers Tuesday into Wednesday with amounts much lower.” 

The key aspect of this storm, when compared to last week’s tropical storm, is that “colder air will be dropping in the area so the snow level will drop to as low as 3,000 feet and the Grapevine at 4,100 feet,” said Hoxie. “We’re not expecting a great deal of snow in the pass but any snow is hazardous and possibly a problem.” 

That was the case by late Monday afternoon when the California Highway Patrol announced it was holding southbound traffic at Grapevine Road in Kern County and northbound traffic in Castaic on Interstate 5, while “escorting the residual traffic through the other side,” according to a CHP Fort Tejon tweet. 

Traffic cleared before 7 p.m. as CHP escorted passing traffic through the area.

“This is because of operation snowflake at the Grapevine,” said CHP Officer Elizabeth Kravig.  

Several spinouts and vehicles stuck in the snow were reported as a result of severe weather conditions. CHP, via social media, advised that motorists use chains in the areas of Frazier Mountain Park Roadway, Cuddy Valley Road, Lockwood Valley Road and Mil Potrero Highway. 

In the SCV, first responders treated multiple, traffic collisions, including one near the San Fernando Pass with an overturned pickup truck. 

“We got the call at 4:15 p.m., on the scene at 4:25 p.m.,” said Leslie Lua, spokesperson for the Los Angeles County Fire Department. “The vehicle was on its side.” 

At least one person was treated for possible injuries in that call, which took place on Clampitt Road and Sierra Highway. 

While most of the rainfall was expected Monday evening, Hoxsie said residents should prepare for the possibility of yet another cold storm next week.

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