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Historic storm sends debris through LA's Hollywood Hills and leaves 1.1 million without power

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Karen Bass Fat Black Ass

Feb 15, 2024, 4:47:56 PMFeb 15
LOS ANGELES — A storm of historic proportions dumped a record amount of
rain over parts of Los Angeles on Monday, sending mud and boulders down
hillsides dotted with multimillion-dollar homes while people living in
homeless encampments in many parts of the city scrambled for safety.

More than one million people statewide were without power.

The storm was the second one fueled by an atmospheric river to hit the
state over the span of days.

About 2.5 million people in the Los Angeles area, including the Hollywood
Hills and Beverly Hills, were under a flash flood warning.

Up to 9 inches (23 centimeters) of rain had already fallen in the area,
with more expected, according to the National Weather Service, which
called the flash flooding and threat of mudslides “a particularly
dangerous situation.”

Already crews were rescuing people from swift-moving water in various
parts of Southern California, including two homeless people who were
evacuated Monday from a small island in the Santa Ana River in San
Bernardino, about 55 miles (88.51 kilometers) east of Los Angeles,
authorities said.

Gushing rivers carried mud, rocks and household objects downhill as
floodwaters coursed through Studio City, an area on the backside of the
Hollywood Hills.

Sixteen Studio City residents were evacuated and two homes were damaged,
city officials said.

“It looks like a river that’s been here for years,” said Keki Mingus,
whose neighbors’ homes were damaged. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”

The Los Angeles Fire Department said 1,000 firefighters were contending
with 49 debris flows, 130 reports of flooding, half a dozen structure
fires and several rescues of motorists stranded in vehicles.

Drake Livingston who lives in the Beverly Crest neighborhood, was watching
a movie around midnight when a friend alerted him to flooding.

“We looked outside and there’s a foot-and-a-half of running water, and it
starts seeping through the doors,” Livingston said.

Livingston scrambled to save some possessions but eventually had to
retreat to a neighbor’s house. In the morning, Livingston’s car was
submerged in several feet of mud.

Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass urged residents to avoid driving, warning of
fallen trees and electrical lines on flooded roadways.

Over 10 inches (25.4 centimeters) of rain has fallen in the Santa Monica
Mountains. Los Angeles Fire Chief Kristin Crowley said hazards will
continue to be a threat in areas around recent wildfire burn scars, noting
that rain is forecast to continue into Tuesday.

A record 4.1 inches (10.41 centimeters) of rain fell Sunday in downtown
Los Angeles, making it the 10th wettest day on record, the National
Weather Service said. That’s more rain than the area typically gets for
the entire month.

That didn’t stop the Grammy Awards on Sunday night from continuing as
planned at downtown’s Arena.

The weather service forecast up to 8 inches (20 centimeters) of rainfall
across Southern California’s coastal and valley areas, with 14 inches (35
centimeters) possible in the foothills and mountains over the next two

Commuters stepped through several inches of floodwater on Monday morning
as they rushed to catch trains at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles.

The storm over the weekend inundated streets and brought down trees and
electrical lines throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, while the weather
service issued a rare “hurricane force wind warning” for the Central
Coast. Several people had to be rescued from rising floodwaters, including
those in cars and others living in a homeless encampments.

In Yuba City, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) northeast of San Francisco,
police said they were investigating the death of a man found under a big
redwood tree in his backyard Sunday evening.

A neighbor heard the tree fall, and it was possible the man was using a
ladder to try and clear the redwood when he was killed, police said on

In Southern California, off the coast of Long Beach, 19 people were
rescued Sunday after the 40-foot sailboat they were traveling in lost its
mast, said Brian Fisk, a firefighter and paramedic for the Long Beach Fire

Another vessel heard the distress call on the marine radio and helped
rescue eight people while 11 were able to get onto the rocky breakwater by
Alamitos Bay where they were rescued by lifeguards, he said. One person
was treated for injuries.

“They went out sailing in gale-force winds and stormy weather,” Fisk said.
“They’re very, very lucky.”

Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency for most counties in
coastal Southern California and said emergency resources were ready, while
emergency shelters were opened.

Most public schools in Los Angeles were open, though other districts
called off classes.

Heavy snow was falling throughout the Sierra Nevada and motorists were
urged to avoid mountain roads.

Much of the state was still drying out from the initial atmospheric river-
powered storm that blew in last week. Atmospheric rivers are relatively
narrow plumes of moisture that form over an ocean and can produce
torrential amounts of rain as they move over land.

Both atmospheric rivers were called a “Pineapple Express” because they
originated near Hawaii.

Since last winter, 46 atmospheric rivers have made landfall on the US West
Coast, pulling the state out of a yearslong drought, according to the
Scripps Institution of Oceanography’s Center for Western Weather and Water

Nine were categorized as strong, two were extreme and one was exceptional.
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