Lightning storm dims Friday night lights
A thunderstorm lit up the Southland sky Friday night, with rain falling widely across the region.
Lightning struck palm trees at the Joint Forces Training Base in Los Alamitos, setting six to 10 trees on fire, said Capt. Steve Concialdi of the Orange County Fire Authority. Fortunately, there were no buildings close by, he added.
About a dozen firefighters were sent to the scene along the 4300 block of Farquhar Avenue.
Concialdi said the crews were “making sure the fires were fully extinguished so that embers don’t get picked up in the wind” and start spot fires near homes, businesses or vegetation.
Officials at fire agencies and the National Weather Service issued warnings for people to stay indoors, noting that lightning can strike as far as 10 miles from a thunderstorm. “When thunder roars, stay indoors,” tweeted the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
Forecasts show a chance for more rain and thunderstorms through Saturday afternoon.
Lightning strikes at Santa Ana Stadium sent spectators at the much-anticipated football game pitting the nation’s No. 1 highschool team, St. John Bosco, against No. 2 Mater Dei scrambling for cover and causing several delays before the game was finally postponed to Saturday.
Social media feeds filled up with sports fans lamenting the interruptions, with one observer posting on Facebook: “Of all days! It would rain tonight on the biggest game of the season, rival teams, Bosco vs. Mater Dei! Raining cats and dogs.”
Santa Ana police reported that 5,000 people had gathered for the game. Shortly before the game started, lightning struck a tree outside the stadium.
“Crazy weather!!” one fan said online. “This is the game of the week.”
Fans were out in force to see their teams and not happy about the weather.
“Everybody’s like, ‘Let them play. Let them play. We want to see action,’ ” said Beverly Masaniai Palelei, a Santa Ana resident.