A powerful Pacific storm brought moderate to heavy rain, strong winds and a possibility of thunderstorms to San Diego County Friday.

The National Weather Service said the inclement weather will continue into much of the weekend, though the heaviest rainfall is expected this morning into this afternoon, with rainfall rates in excess of one inch an hour possible Friday.

National Weather Service radar image at 6:14 a.m. Friday shows rain across San Diego and Orange counties.
National Weather Service radar image at 6:14 a.m. Friday shows rain across San Diego and Orange counties.

A flash flood watch will be in effect from 6 a.m. Friday to late Saturday night for coastal, valley and mountains areas. Mountain areas near where the Chariot, General and San Felipe fires occurred are especially susceptible to debris flow.

Beach areas also are subject to a coastal flood warning today because high surf is expected. In issuing the coastal flood warning from 6 a.m. today to 1 a.m. Sunday, the NWS said the local surf will build to 8 to 12 feet with sets to 15 feet by Saturday afternoon.

A high surf advisory will be in effect from 4 a.m. Saturday to 4 a.m. Monday.

“Coastal flooding could cause damage to beach-front property if proper precautions are not taken,” the agency said. “Large and rough surf, along with strong rip currents, will create hazardous conditions for swimmers and surfs.”

Residents and business owners in the city of San Diego are eligible for up to 10 free sandbags from area fire and lifeguard stations, while supplies last. Sand is not included, though city officials said residents and business owners were free to fill up their bags with beach sand.

For mariners off the coast of San Diego County, a small craft advisory and a gale warning for fierce winds are both in effect today.

Strong winds are also expected throughout the rest of the county today, particularly in mountain and desert areas, where sustained south to southwest winds of 25 to 35 miles per hour and widespread gusts up to 60 mph are expected. Isolated gusts of up to 75 mph in the most wind-prone areas are also likely, according to the weather service.

A high wind warning for the mountains and deserts is in effect until 6 a.m. Saturday.

A slightly less serious wind advisory is in effect for coastal and valley areas until 8 p.m. Saturday. According to the weather service, coastal and valley areas will likely see sustained south to southwest winds of 20 to 30 mph and gusts up to 40 mph.

— City News Service

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.