Cold, windy storm hits drought-stricken California

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Rain is falling in Southern California as a cold northern storm front rolls through the drought-stricken region.

The National Weather Service says a tenth of an inch to nearly a half-inch of rain has fallen in some coastal areas in the past 24 hours, mostly beginning Thursday afternoon.

Bands of brief but heavy showers will continue through the evening, followed by an overnight lull.

The heaviest rain won't arrive until Friday, when there'll be a chance of thunderstorms, gusty winds and possibly some small hail.

Local mountains are seeing some snow and could get 3 to 6 inches above 6,000 feet.

Experts say such weather fronts are rare this late in May - and this one won't pack enough of a punch to make much difference to the thirsty state.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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