A powerful storm slammed Riverside County Thursday, causing flooding that left a homeless woman dead in Corona, washed away a shed and brick wall and threatened a home in Lake Elsinore and prompting evacuation orders around recent burn areas.

Flash flood watches and flood warnings were in place for various locations in the county throughout the day, but most were allowed to expire by early evening as the storm began to pass by. But the deluge left a mess in its wake.

A homeless woman died when she and her boyfriend, who were trying to escape the rain by huddling in a concrete stormwater channel in Riverside, were swept away by the growing flow of runoff. They became separated as they floated downstream, and while the man was pulled from the water by rescue crews in Corona, the woman was found unconscious a short time later in full cardiac arrest, authorities said.

She was pronounced dead at a hospital.

In Lake Elsinore, water raged through a flood-control channel, washing away a shed alongside a large home, with a woman who was trying to remove items from the structure narrowly escaping before it fell into the raging water, witnesses said.

The flowing water also threatened the integrity of the home, but it remained standing. A brick wall facing the flood channel behind the home next door was not as lucky. It tumbled into the flowing channel, and the roof of another building collapsed as the water raged.

The Riverside County Emergency Management Department had initially posted voluntary evacuation warnings for the residential areas impacted by the Holy Fire, but those warnings were eventually elevated to mandatory evacuation orders.

With the storm passing Thursday night, mandatory evacuation orders remained in place only for the Amorose, Laguna-A and Withrow-A neighborhoods. Mandatory evacuation orders were reduced to voluntary for the Alvarado-A, Alberhill, Glen Eden, Glen Ivy-A, Glen Ivy-B, Grace, Horsethief-A, Horsethief-B, Maitri, McVicker-A and Rice.

Voluntary orders also remained in place for the Alvarado-B, Alvarado-C, Lakeside-A, Lakeside-B, Lakeside-C, Laguna-B and McVicker-B areas.

All of the affected properties front the burn scar areas from the 23,000-acre Holy Fire within the Cleveland National Forest.

A wide area skirting the eastern boundary of the Cleveland National Forest was left exposed to potential flood damage because of the Holy Fire, which denuded steep terrain below Santiago Peak, permitting water to flow unchecked onto lower slopes where subdivisions are situated.

A care and reception center has been established at Temescal Canyon High School, 28755 El Toro Road, Lake Elsinore.

Evacuation warnings were also ordered during the brunt of the storm for areas impacted by the 13,000-acre Cranston Fire in August, including the Apple Canyon, Fleming Ranch, Hurkey Creek and Strawberry Creek communities. The areas generally parallel state Routes 74 and 243 between Lake Hemet and Idyllwild, where the fire consumed large swaths of wilderness in the San Bernardino National Forest.

A care and reception center was established at Idyllwild School, 26700 Highway 243.

The arson fire left properties exposed to mud and debris flows, during which “boulders and trees (may come) crashing down hillsides,” according to an EMD statement.

County officials urged residents to check maps at www.RivCoReady.org/StormReady to determine if they are in an evacuation area. Residents can also sign up for emergency alert notifications via the website.

A chance of scattered showers will return Friday evening and remain through Monday.

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