Powerful storm leads to swift water rescues, floods and crashes in Southern California – Pasadena Star News

Heavy rain pounded Southern California on Sunday, leading to flooding, mud and debris flows and the swift water rescue of a man in the Santa Ana River. The storm also produced snow in the mountains, creating hazardous driving conditions.

The river rescue occurred Sunday morning near Garden Grove Boulevard, the Orange County Fire Authority reported.

An adult male has been extracted from the water by our swift water rescue team. He is being attended to by firefighter paramedics. pic.twitter.com/DBbnhPuwSX

— OCFA PIO (@OCFireAuthority) December 11, 2022

Rescuers found the man clinging to a cement wall underneath where the boulevard passes over the river. No details on how he wound up in the water were immediately available.

A couple of hikers stranded behind the brimming San Gabriel River near the Heaton Flats trail also were rescued, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said on Twitter.

Swift water rescue, San Gabriel Mountains. #Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Air Rescue 5 deploys #LASD SEB Tactical Medics to rescue 2 hikers stranded behind rain swollen San Gabriel River waters near Heaton Flats Trail since Saturday morning. Saving lives priority 1. pic.twitter.com/TxhG2fmvCV

— SEB (@SEBLASD) December 11, 2022

And in Ontario, a woman had to be plucked out of the Cucamonga wash near Airport Drive, the fire department said.

#Rescue– At approx 0700 we received a call for a subject stuck in the Cucamonga Wash near Airport Dr. Firefighters from our US&R team successfully rescued the victim and she was transported with minor injuries to SARH. Stay away from all moving water! pic.twitter.com/UdqvQLLjkq

— Ontario Fire Dept. (@OntarioFireDept) December 11, 2022

Steady rain fell in the northern San Fernando Valley, where the California Highway Patrol responded to a big-rig crash on the northbound 5 Freeway at Sheldon Street in the Sun Valley area. The vehicles involved in the crash were cleared around noon, but both sides of the freeway were flooded as of 12:30 pm Caltrans had its pumps on scene trying to clear the water.

In Long Beach, police were sent around 9 am to the 300 block of Cherry Avenue, where a palm tree had fallen on a car. No injuries were reported, police said.

There were no immediate reports of injuries. https://t.co/CtMlSWw8pz

— KTLA (@KTLA) December 11, 2022

A car heading southbound on the 5 Freeway in Laguna Niguel on Sunday landed down an embankment after spinning out of control. (OnScene.TV)

In Laguna Niguel, the driver of a car going south on the 5 Freeway lost control and it went down an embankment, landing upside down. The driver was able to get out, but the CHP closed off the area because downed wires were wrapped around the car.

But a driver on the 60 Freeway in Jurupa Valley died when his car spun out of control because of water on the road. The car struck the rear of a fire engine that had been parked on the shoulder to block a different crash.

Lake Hughes Road, between Pine Canyon and Dry Gulch roads in Lake Hughes, was closed due to mud and debris on the roadway, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works reported. The department was asking the public to avoid the area and use alternate routes.

Flooding was reported in Pomona at the underpass at First Street, with several streets in the area either closed or affected, the police department said.

The weather was causing some power outages as well. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power tweeted at 8:46 am that crews were working to restore power to affected customers as quickly and safely as possible, while working in challenging conditions.

Rainfall totals in San Bernardino Mountains communities through about 3 pm ranged from about 2 1/2 to about 4 3/4 inches, the National Weather Service said. Mountain High, with an elevation of 7,500 feet, had received 4 inches of snow while Big Bear City, at 6,800 feet, received 2 to 4 inches of snow, the NWS said.

In Riverside County, the Idyllwild mountain community received about 1.15 inches of rain.

In Orange County, heavy rain was reported in Coto de Caza with 1.65 inches, 1.45 inches northwest of Yorba Linda, 1.18 inches in San Juan Capistrano and 3/4 of an inch in Costa Mesa and Laguna Beach, according to NWS meteorologist Elizabeth Shank. The 1.33 inches recorded in Anaheim for the 24-hour period ending at 4 pm set a daily record, beating the .94 of an inch set for the date in 1996.

The storm was expected to pass through the area by Sunday night. The NWS said that in the Los Angeles County area, heavy showers could produce snow down to the 3,000 feet level. Snow accumulations of 2 inches were possible on the 5 Freeway’s Grapevine area and the Antelope Valley foothills, meaning travel delays are likely into Monday morning.

Several mtn. Roads in the @Angeles_NF will close tonight at 9pm due to snow in the forecast.
❄️ Angeles Forest Hwy from Aliso Canyon to Angeles Crest
❄️ Big Tujunga Canyon Rd from Vogel Flats to Angeles Forest
❄️ Upper Big T Canyon Rd from Angeles Forest Hwy to Angeles Crest

— LA Co Public Works (@LACoPublicWorks) December 12, 2022

Chain control being issued for the Riverside County San Jacinto mountains! Don’t ask us if you need chains, bring them! #Caltrans8 pic.twitter.com/B1Oa5XlzZF

— Caltrans District 8 (@Caltrans8) December 11, 2022

Staff writers Josh Cain, Mona Darwish and Hunter Lee contributed to this story.

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