Southland Dampened by Surprise Thundershowers

Surprise thundershowers dropped in on the Southland on Tuesday afternoon, bringing lightning and some brisk, if short-lived, rains.

The heaviest showers were over the Southern California mountains and deserts and in the San Gabriel Valley as a moist, unstable air mass dallied aloft.

"We weren't expecting any of this," said Cary Schudy of the Earth Environment Service in San Francisco. Nor, he added, did he expect any more of it for the time being.

Lightning struck a transformer in the 1500 block of Rubio Drive in San Marino, Southern California Edison Co. spokesman Bob Krauch said, leaving about 1,500 customers briefly powerless.

In downtown Los Angeles, a mere .01 of an inch of rain was measured by the National Weather Service. There was a trace at Los Angeles International Airport, .01 at Pasadena, .04 at Riverside, .09 at Big Bear Lake and .27 at Beaumont.

Showers were reported in the Antelope Valley, the western Mojave Desert, over the San Bernardino and San Gabriel mountains and south into San Diego County.

Today through Thursday should be mostly clear, with high temperatures of 68 to 74 degrees and local gusty, northerly winds 20 to 30 m.p.h., the National Weather Service said. Tuesday's high at Los Angeles Civic Center reached 69.

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