SANTA MONICA—Tropical Storm Dolores has brought nasty weather to southern California. On Saturday, July 18 at around 8 a.m., beaches in Venice, Santa Monica, Malibu, and elsewhere in Los Angeles County were closed due to grim-looking thunderheads and visible lightning. They re-opened a couple hours later, when the Los Angeles County Fire Department tweeted that beach-goers should be ready to evacuate at a moment’s notice.

LA County beaches were close again around 2 p.m., a little after Long Beach and Huntington Beach officially closed all its beaches. The beaches were expected to re-open around 4:30 p.m., but persistent bad weather kept the closures intact.

Thanks to Dolores, southern Californians are getting some much-needed moisture in what is typically the driest month of the year. Heavy rainfall even slowed traffic to 20 miles an hour on Interstate 10. The Weather Channel predicts that the heaviest rains will fall on southern California, southern Nevada, southern Utah, and Arizona.

Dolores formed as a tropical storm off the coast of Mexico o n July 12, and then became a hurricane on July 13. The rains this morning resulted from Dolores’ moving further north and weakening, according to In its move north, Dolores triggered a “moisture surge,” which resulted in the local heavy rainfall, expected to continue until Monday.

Developments concerning beach reopenings and closures will be forthcoming from Los Angeles County Lifeguards via Twitter.