TEMECULA (CBSLA.com) — Thousands of residents were without power Wednesday following a night of wild weather that saw rain, lightning and hail over the skies of Southern California.
The National Weather Service reported hail up to the size of nickels was expected through the morning hours, along with heavy rain and “frequent dangerous” lightning in the Riverside County region that includes Moreno Valley, Yucaipa, and Mentone.
Riverside County Fire Department Public Safety Specialist Jody Hagemann told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO residents need to be aware of any lightning strikes in their area.
“Stay away from trees, streams, bodies of water,” said Hagemann. “Electrical currents can travel through water, so we want to make sure that residents are doing everything to keep themselves and their family safe.”
Starting around 5 a.m., Menifee residents reported seeing hail that was apparently big enough to damage car windshields in the area.
Lennon Le Blanc told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO the unseasonable weather left a crack in his windshield.
“It had to be the size of a grape, a green table grape or something,” said Le Blanc. “Not something I’ve seen here recently, that’s for darn sure.”
Southern California Edison officials reported over 2,000 power outages in Murrieta, Temecula and unincorporated areas of Riverside County due to lightning and other causes.
Edison’s David Song said crews are out trying to restore service, but stormy conditions could delay those efforts.
“A lot of the impacted areas were affected by lightning, so we could be looking at downed wires,” said Song.
CBS2 Chief Meteorologist reported the Inland Empire, inland Orange County, Riverside County, mountain communities and the high desert could see some isolated thunderstorms over the course of the day Wednesday.