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Lightning, heavy rains spark brush fires and flood roads

August 30, 2012 |  4:42 pm

Approximate location of road closure shown in red.

Lightning strikes and heavy rains pounded Southern California on Thursday afternoon, sparking fires and flooding streets from the Antelope Valley to Moreno Valley.

Heavy rain was reported in foothill areas of the San Gabriel Valley and in the Moreno Valley, where some cars became stuck when flash floods overran a roadway.

The California Highway Patrol closed the westbound 60 Freeway near Gilman Springs Road due to heavy flooding. Traffic was backed up for about six miles, the agency said in a preliminary report.

In Los Angeles County, firefighters were chasing several brush fires sparked by lightning strikes.

Crews were responding to fire that was threatening at least one structure in the Whittier Hills in an area near Norwalk and East Whittier boulevards, the Los Angeles County Fire Department said. Fire commanders reported seeing heavy smoke as they were responding. Elsewhere, small brush fires erupted in the Pearblossom area.


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— Robert J. Lopez


Image: Approximate location of road closure shown in red. Credit: Google Maps