Photo by John Schreiber.
County Supervisor Mike Antonovich. Photo by John Schreiber.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors declared a local state of emergency Tuesday in response to the storms that slammed the Antelope Valley, prompting mudslides that swamped roads, trapped vehicles and damaged homes and other properties.

Supervisor Michael Antonovich asked that the emergency be declared for Quartz Hill, Leona Valley, Lake Hughes, Elizabeth Lake and surrounding areas.

“The rain, flooding and debris flows destroyed and damaged structures, including homes, and forced the closure of major highways and local roads,” Antonovich said. “These conditions warrant that the county proclaim the existence of a local emergency to free up resources to support response and recovery efforts.”

The resolution will be sent to the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services for the governor’s approval — which would free up state resources to assist with cleanup and recovery crews.

Thursday’s rain storm sent a lava-like flow of mud into some neighborhoods, trapping some motorists whose vehicles were quickly swamped. Antonovich said three sheriff’s patrol units and at least 12 people had to be rescued from vehicles trapped by high flood waters during the storm.

Mud also flowed into a number of homes. Palmdale officials said at least 10 homes were damaged and Antonovich said one of his own deputies had flood damage in and outside of his home.

County emergency management officials are urging residents whose properties were damaged by flooding or mudslides to report the damage by filling out an online assessment survey.

According to the county Office of Emergency Management, residents can fill out the survey at www.lacounty.gov/elnino and click on the “Damage Assessment Survey” link under the heading “Info for Affected Homeowners.”

The website also provides residents with weather outlooks, information on road closures and tips on emergency preparedness and is designed to be a news clearinghouse during upcoming winter storms.

—City News Service

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