A cold rain storm that pummeled Los Angeles this week dumped more than 3 inches of rain on some parts of LA and shattered a record in Downtown Los Angeles.
On Thursday, 1.9 inches fell in DTLA, beating a 21-year-old record of 1.01 inches, according to the National Weather Service. That record was set in 1997, when the strongest El Niño in decades ripped through the area, says Weather Service meteorologist Eric Boldt. The two-day total for Downtown was 2.11 inches—close to the neighborhood’s average rainfall for the entire month of December, 2.33 inches.
An impressive amount of rain fell elsewhere across the region on Wednesday and Thursday, with the Weather Service recording 3.1 inches in Woodland Hills in the two-day span. Agoura Hills saw 3.6 inches of rain, and Pasadena received 3.9 inches.
The rain totals are not entirely surprising given the intensity of the rain. The Weather Service, which recorded rainfall rates of up to a half an inch per hour, had measured more than 2 inches of rain in Agoura by 1 a.m. Thursday.
Some of the heaviest rainfall hit the Santa Monica Mountains, which were ravaged by the Woolsey Fire, according to Boldt.
Flooding is more likely after fires, when burnt debris collects on hillsides and prevents the soil from absorbing the rainfall, and early Thursday morning, downpours sent a deluge of mud onto Pacific Coast Highway, which was closed in both directions from Trancas Canyon Road to the Las Posas. Encinal Canyon and Decker Canyon roads were also fully also closed in both directions.
At Burbank Airport, a plane skid off the runway, prompting the airlines to cancel and delay flights. I-5 was closed through the Grapevine as snow blanketed the pass.
The storm made a significant impact in a short time. Here are some photos of the damage:
Per LASD Reserve Officer Tommy Fakehany:— Cece Woods (@Cece90265) December 6, 2018
Heavy mud flow at #PCH and Leo Carrillo. All traffic is being turned around and the area is not passable. #malibu #woolseyfire #traffic PC: Tommy Thomas Tommy Fakehany pic.twitter.com/YCj1l6fKPI
#WoolseyStorm *UPDATE* per @LASDHQ PCH is closed from Busch to the Ventura County Line. Flooding at multiple intersections, crews are in the area working to open lanes. Utilize alternative routes and avoid the area. pic.twitter.com/aYIA8KfIk1— LACounty Fire PIO (@LACoFDPIO) December 6, 2018
Car navigates around large rock on #Topanga Canyon Road. @NWSLosAngeles warns loosened rocks and boulders could tumble down from #WoolseyFire burn scar @CBSLA @DanielleGersh @suzmarques @CBSLAPeter pic.twitter.com/gNEaBL3DVo— Kara Finnstrom (@KaraFinnstrom) December 6, 2018
The rain has stopped in the western part of #Malibu - but all that water caused a mudslide on #PCH at #leocarillo state beach - a car is stuck in the mud, told driver is ok. Strong winds in this part of #Malibu right now @ABC7 pic.twitter.com/N2fxfkpht8— Josh Haskell (@abc7JoshHaskell) December 6, 2018