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As storm approaches Southern California, evacuations ordered for L.A. hillsides


Foothill areas north of Los Angeles are under a flash flood watch as another winter storm approaches, threatening burn areas with more mudslides and prompting mandatory evacuations for hundreds of homes.

Showers and thunderstorms are expected to drop between 1/3 of an inch to 2 inches of rain starting Tuesday afternoon through Tuesday night, said forecasters with the National Weather Service in Oxnard. Though the storm will be patchy and "showery," forecasters said it could dump more than a half-inch of rain an hour in some areas.

Los Angeles County authorities issued mandatory evacuation orders Monday night for more than 500 residences in mudslide-prone areas in La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta and Acton. Sheriff's deputies are ordering residents to leave their homes by 10 a.m. Tuesday

A complete list of all addresses to be evacuated can be found on the Web page of the county Department of Public Works.

Evacuation centers will be set up at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, 2411 Montrose Ave., Montrose, and the Acton Community Center at 3748 Nickels Ave. in Acton, authorities said.

Crews are working to clear debris basins that filled up during the storm Saturday, when mud flows damaged more than 40 homes.

Some residents in La Cañada Flintridge have questioned whether the county's emergency notification system worked properly

--Tony Barboza and Robert J. Lopez

Photo: Several homes were red-tagged on Manistee Drive in La Cañada Flintridge after weekend mudslides.  Credit: Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times.

More photos

How mudslides form after a fire

Comments () | Archives (7)

These officials are incompetent. Are these the same officials that are responsible for letting a small fire rage out of control? The Station Fire should have been contained in short order. But in an effort to make their Christmas and increase their overtime they called off the helicopters. Less than a 100 acre fire doubles each night with no wind over and over again till it's an inferno that killed people. I don't blame the firefighters on the ground, they wanted to get in there and fight it, but the higher up's who had them sitting on their hands shmoozing in "Staging Area's" that are really mobile coffee shops. The US Forrest Service and whoever was in charge of that fire in it's earliest stages are the one's responsible for these homes lost. They should not only pay for their clean up, but re-building where needed. How could they stand behind yet another bad choice not to order evacuations. Today hundreds are ordered. I know the folks up there are sick of it and probably don't wanna leave, but letting this happen to people in their homes is not the way to teach a lesson. Remember the La Conchita disaster in Ventura. People could get burried alive. If they would have fought the fire to begin with we wouldn't be in this mess. Gross Incompetence.....

Paul, the gross incompetence was not in how the fires were fought (or not fought), but in allowing fuel on the ground to build up for years and years and years in an area where fire has ALWAYS played a major ecological role. Those places burn every 5 to ten years, with or without human intervention. Suppress that, and you get a Station fire, or a Biscuit fire.

How is it the firefighters or their superior's fault that people decide to live on hillsides prone to fires and mudslides. The only people responsible for the mud in their homes are the people who decide to build and live there.

Now the taxpayers are paying the tab for fire fighting relief, mud abatement and clean up efforts. Stop blaming others and move to Compton like everyone else

The last comment about La Conchita disaster is right on point. Twice the hillside slide and still homeowners talk about rebuilding and moving back in. If anyone gets killed, those owners, who voluntarily chose to live there, should be liable for manslaughter, by intentionally ignoring a known risk.

Why should others be responsible for homeowners building their sprawling mansions on hillsides, and expect tax payers' resources to bail them out? Plenty of places to live other than on hillsides. Just like the wealthy banks, when it is to their advantage, they want to get bailed out. Those homeowners could live anywhere, but decide to take the risk. NO MORE BAIL OUTS!

If you want to live in foothills, close to mountains than pay the price. Why tax payers should be paying for it?

The only reason the La Conchita area existed was early in the last century the rail road company cut the hillside back to prevent landslides from falling on there tracks, so it would instead fall on the cleared out area. Then people put houses on it, then there is a landslide & then they sue the farmer above the hill for watering his crops, as he had been doing for years.

I know you people think all those homes are mansions: You're Wrong. That was where they filmed "It's a wonderful life" remember "Bailey Park" thats the place. Simple track homes that have been there since the 30's really nothing special about them other than the fact that people actually took care of them. 3 bedroom houses are not mansions watch the news and take a good look at the homes. Take a drive up Ocean View Blvd. it's not all that compared to Bel Air or Pasadena. I do blame the Forrest Service because they let it get out of control on purpose to clear dead brush or to save money. If those area's should burn every 5 years why have they not been setting control fires to control it. Those homes have been there longer than most of us have been alive. My brother is a Firefighter in La Crescenta and was told to stand down. I don't blame the soldiers, but the Colonials. Do we blame the soldiers in Iraq or the Commander. No we support the guys and blame the admin. It's like those homes on the Gulf coast. Hurricane Alley crushes homes every year. The gov. rebuilds um. Why should this be any different. They were zoned and permitted to build there the city must provide services.


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