Light rainfall Friday could affect Memorial Day weekend travel

Students walk in the rain last month near Royce Hall on the UCLA campus.

Students walk in the rain last month near Royce Hall on the UCLA campus.

(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Clouds hovering over Southern California could deposit a small amount of rain on the region Friday, possibly affecting road conditions for thousands of people traveling over the Memorial Day weekend.

Rain totals will be low, with a 40% chance of showers expected Friday in the mountains and coast, said Stuart Seto, a weather specialist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard.

“Rainfall amounts will be super light,” he said.

A cool low-pressure system will move into Los Angeles County around midnight, bringing a slight chance of thunderstorms.


The storm will stay clear of Santa Barbara County, skipping over cleanup from Tuesday’s oil spill, Seto said. Up to 105,000 gallons of crude oil poured from a ruptured pipeline.

Crews were working Thursday to remove oil that blackened the coastline.

By Friday night, the rain should move out of the area. Cloudy skies will remain for most of the holiday weekend and into next week, Seto said.

Rain last week dampened parts of California but failed to have an effect on the drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

“Simply stated, the late-season rain and snow showers have improved the appearance of the landscape but have left the underlying, long-term drought virtually untouched,” said Brad Rippey, a meteorologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The state’s 154 reservoirs remained at 18 million acre-feet, or about 1.6 million acre-feet lower than a year ago, according to Rippey.

The season for recharging the reservoirs has ended early because of low snowpack levels, he said.

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