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Radar Operational for Las Vegas Weather Service

The National Weather Service has temporarily repaired its tracking radar for the Las Vegas area after it went out due to a lightning strike. The radar is expected to be operational during the arrival of Hurricane Hilary. Heavy rain and potential flash flooding are expected.

The National Weather Service has temporarily fixed its tracking radar for the Las Vegas area, which went out on Friday night. According to meteorologist Morgan Stessman, the radar was repaired after a problem with a high-voltage cable, and a replacement has been ordered. However, until the new part is received and installed at the radar site, there is a possibility that the radar could go out again. Late on Friday night, a meteorologist suggested that the radar may have been hit by lightning. This is not the first time that the weather service's radar has gone down, as it also experienced issues in May.

Stessman mentioned that they are assuming a lightning strike caused the radar to stop working on Friday evening due to heavy storm activity and an error message indicating a power issue. With the radar out of service, the Las Vegas office had limited coverage of its assigned region during a period of intense storms. In the absence of radar, meteorologists have been using satellite and other nearby radar facilities to monitor rainfall and wind speeds. However, having the radar operational is crucial as Hurricane Hilary is expected to bring higher winds and rain to the region over the weekend.

On Saturday, the weather remained mostly dry until late in the afternoon. Stessman anticipates that there will be more light rain, which may intensify overnight and into tomorrow as Hilary moves closer. Heavy rains are expected in the Las Vegas Valley through Monday, with potentially dangerous flash flooding occurring as Hilary impacts parts of southern California as well. The hurricane is projected to weaken into a tropical storm and extend into southern and central Nevada, bringing strong winds on Sunday night. The National Weather Service predicts that the Las Vegas Valley will experience 1 to 2.5 inches of rain from Hilary, which is significant considering that the area typically receives only 4.16 inches of rain throughout the year. Stessman estimates that this could account for up to 50% of the annual precipitation over the next three days.

The atmosphere currently holds more moisture than usual, making flooding in the valley more likely due to the heavy rain. The soil may not have enough time to absorb the water from the deluge, leading to potential flooding in certain areas. In Southern California, the weather service issued a "life-threatening" flash flood warning for parts of Inyo County and other areas due to thunderstorms. Flash flood warnings were also released for sections of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Additionally, a tropical storm warning was issued for coastal areas, with winds reaching up to 35 knots and heavier showers expected on Sunday afternoon and night.

Overall, the temporary repair of the tracking radar for the Las Vegas area is a relief, but there is still a chance of further disruptions until the replacement part is installed. The upcoming impact of Hurricane Hilary is a cause for concern, as it is expected to bring heavy rain and strong winds to the region. The National Weather Service advises residents to stay informed about the weather conditions and take necessary precautions to ensure their safety during this period of intense storms.

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