The second day of a two-day storm brought wet roads, scattered flooding and mud flows to the Los Angeles area, including one that destroyed a handful of vehicles and damaged some homes in Burbank.
Evacuation orders that had been in place in the Kagel Canyon, Lopez Canyon and Little Tujunga Canyon areas near the recent Creek Fire burn area were lifted at 10 a.m. The city of Duarte also lifted the evacuation orders that had been in place for about 180 homes near the Fish Fire area, but classes remained canceled for the day at Valley View Elementary School.
A mandatory evacuation order was issued in Burbank for all of Country Club Drive, which was hit by an early morning mudslide that grabbed some cars and an RV out of driveways and carried them downstream, smashing at least one, overturning another and inundating others with mud.
One of those vehicles struck a three-quarter-inch natural gas line in the 1200 block of Country Club Drive. Southern California Gas Co. officials said its crews were on the scene trying to cut off the leak, but there is no risk to the public.
City officials said homes on the street had no gas, electricity or water service.
Burbank Fire Department Battalion Chief John Owings said the slide occurred around 6:30 a.m. thanks to a loaded debris basin above Country Club Drive.
“There were many homes, about 40 to 45 homes, affected by it, a couple homes damaged,” Owings told KCAL9 “We performed two physical rescues at approximately 7 o’clock this morning.”
He said residents had sheltered in place, but the mandatory evacuation order was issued by mid-morning due to the threat of additional slides.
“Any additional rain is going to push more mud down,” Owings said.
An evacuation center was established at McCambridge Recreation Center, 1515 Glenoaks Blvd.
The rain appeared to be tapering off by late morning, with the sun breaking through the clouds. But the damage had already been done in many areas, and forecasters said more downpours were still possible.
At Los Angeles International Airport, flooding forced the closure of the customs area in Terminal 2. Arriving international passengers were being bused to the Tom Bradley International Terminal for processing.
Mud slid down a hillside in the Sun Valley area and inundated part of La Tuna Canyon Road south of the Foothill (210) Freeway. A Los Angeles police patrol car wound up stuck in the muck, but no injuries were reported.
A big rig jack-knifed on the northbound Golden State (5) Freeway in the Los Feliz area around 3:50 a.m., leaving one man dead. The entire northbound freeway was closed for hours, further frustrating commuters already struggling with the soggy drive. Later in the morning, a big rig fell from an overpass onto the northbound 5 Freeway at the Ronald Reagan (118) Freeway, causing another closure.
Officials haven’t confirmed that the crashes were the result of the storm, but the trucks were traveling on rain-soaked roads.
As of midday, more than 4 inches of rain had fallen at Crystal Lake and more than 3 inches came down at Mount Baldy during the two-day storm, according to the National Weather Service. About 2 inches had fallen in Pasadena, and more than 1.5 inches in Burbank, Northridge, Getty Center, Bel Air and Agoura Hills.
Forecasters warned that while the rain had appeared to subside by late morning, more “showers and isolated thunderstorms are expected through this evening with periods of very heavy rain.” A flash flood watch will remain in effect until Tuesday night across much of the Southland.
According to the NWS, rainfall rates of a half-inch to one-inch per hour were possible.
“Rainfall of this intensity can produce dangerous flash flooding,” according to the Weather Service. “Mud and debris flows near recent fires are of particular concern, especially the La Tuna, Creek, Sand and Fish burn areas.”
A wind advisory was allowed to expire at 7 a.m. in the Antelope Valley, and it expired at noon in the rest of the region.
The two-day storm came after a 10-month dry spell in the Southland following torrential rains in January and February of last year. In 2017, downtown Los Angeles experienced its driest March 1 through Dec. 31 since 1878, with only 0.69 of an inch of rainfall, according to the NWS.
The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority announced that winter shelters would stay open until 7 a.m. Wednesday because of the storm.
An offshore flow is forecast to return late Wednesday with warmer temperatures, dry air, low humidity and gusty winds through Sunday.
Saturday could bring sunny skies and highs above 80.
The NWS forecast rainy weather in L.A. County Tuesday and highs of 50 on Mount Wilson; 52 in Palmdale and Lancaster; 54 in Saugus; 56 in Burbank and Woodland Hills; 57 in Pasadena; 59 in Downtown L-A, Avalon, San Gabriel and at LAX; and 50 in Long Beach. Wednesday’s L.A. County temperatures will be up to 9 degrees higher in some communities amid partly cloudy skies, with the sun forecast to make a return on Thursday.
Rainy weather is also expected in Orange County, along with highs of 60 in Mission Viejo; 61 in Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, San Clemente, Fullerton, Irvine and Anaheim; and 62 in Yorba Linda.
–City News Service
>> Want to read more stories like this? Get our Free Daily Newsletters Here!Follow us: