Storm leaves behind snapped trees, accidents across San Diego

Posted at 6:42 AM, Feb 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-18 11:17:27-05

SAN DIEGO - Friday's storm may not have been the strongest of the season in terms of rainfall, but it still packed a punch.

Reports of downed trees and clogged roadways began pouring in early, as winds strengthen ahead of rainfall later Friday afternoon.

The dangerous weather is also likely the culprit behind a pair of fatal accidents that occurred during the evening commute. 

The first accident struck on Interstate 15 north near Mira Mesa Blvd. shortly after 5 p.m. California Highway Patrol officers said a vehicle hydroplaned across the freeway, striking multiple vehicles. One person died and three others were injured and sent to a nearby hospital. 
The second accident occurred just before 6 p.m. on northbound State Route 15 near Interstate 805 in City Heights. CHP said a driver also hydroplaned across two lanes in that accident, and struck a construction truck. The passenger of that vehicle was killed and the driver was transported to the hospital. The driver of the construction truck was also taken to a nearby hospital.
Instances of downed trees continued to occur throughout the day.
Large Eucalyptus trees, weakened by January rainfall already, were especially vulnerable.
A downed tree on the northbound side of I-5 south at Genesee Ave. blocked the slow lane and an off-ramp shortly before noon, prompting a Sig Alert. The alert was cleared before 2 p.m., but not before causing lengthy delays to the afternoon commute.
A fallen tree on northbound SR-163, just south of Robinson Ave., fell on a vehicle and blocked all lanes just after 4 p.m., prompting a Sig Alert as well.
San Diego residents also had their homes to worry about.
Strong winds reportedly took off a portion of one home's roof on the 4000 block of Arroyo Sorrento Rd. in Carmel Valley, and the tin roof of another home in Chula Vista.
Winds also brought a tree tumbling into a Scripps Ranch apartment. Thankfully, no injuries were reported.
Possible road closures due to flooding or debris are expected Saturday, with more rain on the way and in response to Friday's weather. 
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