Half inch of rain dumped on Valley

February 26, 2001|By DARREN SIMON, Staff Writer

The first significant rain of the winter in the Imperial Valley fell for 12 hours straight Sunday through Monday, bringing a half inch of rain to the El Centro area but few reports of damage.

County meteorologist Jim Christopherson said the Valley was hit by a storm centered off the coast of Los Angeles.

He said while the storm was starting to weaken this morning, showers likely would continue today and Tuesday.

Christopherson said cloudy skies will continue through Friday but no rain is expected beyond Tuesday.

He added it is difficult to predict weather patterns for the next week.

Christopherson said the storm is different from recent storms that moved through the Valley. He said while more rain fell, the storm brought with it mild temperatures; earlier storms brought colder weather.

Temperatures were expected to reach 62 degrees today and 65 degrees Tuesday. Later in the week temperatures will reach the high 60s.


Christopherson said the mild temperatures kept snow from falling in the San Diego-area mountains except for the highest peaks. Still, he pointed out driving conditions through the mountains are hazardous because of rain and dense fog.

Fire departments throughout the Imperial Valley reported no damage caused by the storm.

The California Highway Patrol reported while there were three accidents during the downpour, none was related to the weather.

Imperial Irrigation District officials reported while there may have been scattered power outages only a few people at any one time were affected.

Public works directors from cities throughout the Imperial Valley said there were no reports of damage. Brawley Public Works Director Manuel Aceves said the rain will cause an increase in potholes, particularly on streets already in need of repair.

The rain did affect the farm industry, according to local farmer John Pierre Menvielle.

He said in some cases workers from Mexicali were unable to come into the Imperial Valley today because of the rain.

Menvielle said harvesting was slowed and in some cases may have not taken place at all.

"That's just the way it goes," he said, adding the harvesting will continue Tuesday.

Menvielle added farmers have been cutting hay and that hay likely has been damaged by the rain, which could mean farmers will lose some profit.

Staff Writer Darren Simon can be reached at 337-4082.

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