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Beaches closed amid lightning, rain and hail in Southern California

A lingering rainstorm closed beaches from Palos Verdes to Malibu Tuesday amid concerns about lightning.

The storm brought hail, heavy rain and minor flooding to Los Angeles and Ventura counties, according to the National Weather Service. A flood advisory was issued for the San Gabriel Valley and foothills until 6:15 p.m. Tuesday because of heavy rain.

Forecasters said small hail blanketed parts of Simi Valley and Malibu. Periods of heavy rain caused minor flooding in the valleys.

Reports of lightning forced at least one kite boarder to flee the ocean; another kite boarder was rescued by a lifeguard, according the Los Angeles County Fire Department Lifeguard Division.

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The storm didn’t bring major downpours in Southern California but delivered a significant amount of rain -- and snow -- to Northern California. There is a 20% chance of showers in the Southland through Tuesday night.

The Antelope Valley and L.A. County mountains could see freezing temperatures Wednesday and Thursday.

In the L.A. basin, Wednesday will bring sunny skies with highs at around 70 degrees.

To the north, nearly a foot of snow blanketed parts of the Sierra Nevada as the first major storm of the season moved across California’s drought-stricken mountains and valleys.

“It brought more rain than expected in the Central Valley, but it pretty much shaped up as we expected,” National Weather Service meteorologist Travis Wilson said. “It’s a good first storm of the season, but we need many more like this.”

The sudden arrival of snow and rain was the result of a cold Pacific storm system moving through the state, said Eric Kurth, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Sacramento.

Snow is good news for the Sierra Nevada, where officials said levels hit a record low this year. Snow there provides one-third of California’s water supply.

“It’s certainly good to see the snow falling,” Kurth said.

But the snow may not stick around very long. Some of it is likely to melt by the end of the week, when temperatures are expected to climb.

For breaking news in California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA.


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