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Kay delivers heavy rain, strong winds; Swimmers rescued

Areas of Southern California are seeing the impacts of former Tropical Storm Kay, as several trees have been toppled by high winds and persistent rain has raised the likelihood of flooding.

As forecasters predicted, the storm is becoming less organized as it weakens, and though it veered back out toward the Pacific Ocean before it crossed the U.S.-Mexico border, Kay – now a post-tropical cyclone – has brought plenty of much-needed rain to the Southwest. 

It was forecast to weaken into a remnant low by Saturday morning as it moved farther from land.

On Friday night, Kay had maximum sustained winds of 40 mph with gusts strong enough to take down trees, as was witnessed in Norwalk. Crews worked quickly to cut the tree apart so the blocked street could be reopened.

A huge tree fell in Norwalk amid Tropical Storm Kay on Sept. 9, 2022. (KTLA)

The storm also toppled trees in Florence-Firestone and Cerritos.

Swimmers Rescued

The National Weather Service also issued a Coastal Flood Advisory and High Surf Advisory for Catalina and the Santa Barbara Islands where 5 to 9-foot waves were expected along with dangerous rip currents.

Those dangerous currents were plainly visible in Venice, where lifeguards rescued at least 11 swimmers who were caught in the rip currents.

“The lifeguards here in Venice, we’re quick to act,” said Spencer Parker, a lifeguard captain for the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Long Beach braces for Kay

The City of Long Beach is preparing for high tides and possible high swells by fortifying the berms in the Peninsula.

“The tide has peaked and the berm at the Peninsula has eroded significantly,” the city’s fire department said Thursday evening.

Sandbags and sand are available in the parking lot at 72nd Place and Ocean Boulevard, as well as Station 7, 2295 Elm St.; Station 12, 1199 Artesia Blvd.; Station 13, 2475 Adriatic Ave.; and Station 14, 5200 Eliot St.

Los Angeles-area Watches & Warnings

Sandbags without sand are available at all other fire stations.

“Sand and sandbags are available only to Long Beach residents. Residents are required to bring their IDs to pick up a maximum of 10 bags. Residents are advised to bring their own shovel and/or tool when collecting sand. It is recommended that those individuals needing specific assistance with filling sandbags respond to the Claremont lot for additional support. It is illegal to pick up sand from the beaches,” city officials said.

As of Friday night, fire officials described the flooding as mild, with no damage reported.

Tropical Storm Kay radar as of 6:30 p.m. Pacific on Sept. 9, 2022

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