STORM HEIGHTENS FLOOD, SLIDE FEARS; HEAVY RAIN IN FORECAST FOR REGION.Byline: Sonia Giordani Daily News Staff Writer
Officials braced Monday for flash floods and mudslides as a powerful El Nino-related storm hit the Pacific coast, drenching drenching
farmer's term for the administration of medicines as solutions or suspensions in water by mouth with a drench bottle, gun or funnel.
to be included in a bridle as a bit. Ventura County with heavy rain that is forecast to continue through midweek.
The storm is expected to dump 3 to 5 inches of rain along the coast and more than 5 inches at higher elevations, including Thousand Oaks Thousand Oaks, residential city (1990 pop. 104,352), Ventura co., S Calif., in a farm area; inc. 1964. Avocados, citrus, vegetables, strawberries, and nursery products are grown. and Simi Valley Simi Valley (sē`mē, sĭm`ē), city (1990 pop. 100,217), Ventura co., SW Calif. in an oil, fruit, and farm region; laid out 1887, inc. 1969. , said Dennis Tussey, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
``This is a very large storm off the West Coast. It's a little more than your typical winter storm,'' Tussey said.
Ventura, Santa Barbara Santa Barbara (săn'tə bär`brə, –bərə), city (1990 pop. 85,571), seat of Santa Barbara co., S Calif., on the Pacific Ocean; inc. 1850. , San Luis Obispo San Luis Obispo (săn l`ĭs ōbĭs`pō), city (1990 pop. 41,958), seat of San Luis Obispo co., S Calif., near San Luis Obispo Bay; inc. 1856. and Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. counties were placed under flash flood watches, meaning flooding was possible. And swift-water rescue teams were on alert in Ventura and Los Angeles counties because of rain-swollen washes, creeks and rivers.
Huge waves battered the already damaged Ventura Pier and residents of La Conchita looked warily at the rain-soaked bluff looming over their homes. A huge slide in 1995 destroyed homes and forced hundreds of residents to evacuate.
Mudslides closed Highway 33 and Highway 150 near Ojai.
``We've had minor flooding calls and agricultural ditches overflowed in spots, but there's no major damage and no major flooding,'' said David Traub, spokesman for the Ventura County Fire Department Not to be confused with Ventura Fire Department.
The Ventura County Fire Department (VCFD) provides fire protection and emergency response services for the unincorporated areas of Ventura County, California, and for six other cities within the county. .
Red Cross and county officials responded to flood-related calls from beach-front neighborhoods like Mussel mussel, edible freshwater or marine bivalve mollusk. Mussels are able to move slowly by means of the muscular foot. They feed and breathe by filtering water through extensible tubes called siphons; a large mussel filters 10 gal (38 liters) of water per day. Shoal, where heavy surf threatened homes, and other flood-prone regions of the county.
``We have volunteers located throughout the county on standby, and we've moved some cots and blankets to various locations in preparation for any serious flooding that may occur,'' said Ann Sobel, executive director of the local Red Cross chapter.
Officials also monitored hillsides that could be weakened by the deluge, working with residents to lay sandbags sandbags
small sacks containing sand used to support an anesthetized animal in dorsal recumbency and prevent it from rolling sideways during anesthesia or surgery. and make other preparations to prevent mudslides and flooding.
Joe Luna, spokesman for the county Fire Department, said staffers are on call with heavy equipment, such as bulldozers, in case berms and other barriers need to be knocked down to ease the flow of water.
``We go through this every year in the wintertime, so it's not particularly new to Ventura County,'' Luna said, adding that residents need to make sure their storm drains are clear of debris and that they are supplied with sandbags and the proper equipment to protect their homes from the rain.
Bordering the county line, Agoura Hills residents can pick up free sandbags and sand at the Whizin's Shopping Center shopping center, a concentration of retail, service, and entertainment enterprises designed to serve the surrounding region. The modern shopping center differs from its antecedents—bazaars and marketplaces—in that the shops are usually amalgamated into and at City Hall and local fire stations.
At Los Angeles County Fire Station No. 65 in Agoura, Capt. David Flagg helped pass out sandbags to local residents.
``The main thing is that residents with hillsides behind them are very careful to protect themselves, especially the low spots in their homes,'' said Flagg.
Luna urged residents living near creeks and other basins to stay away from flood control channels.
``It doesn't take a lot of water for these channels to become raging rivers. They can float a car away, not to mention a person trying to cross,'' he warned.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
PHOTO (1--Color) Firefighters Patrick Garvey, left, and Jason Swan load burlap bags in Agoura Hills.
(2--Color) A woman walks in the courtyard between City Hall and the library in Simi Valley.
(3--Color) Vehicles drive through a layer of mud at the intersection of Balcom Canyon Road and Highway 118.
(4) A flood sign warns motorists along Balcom Canyon Road at Highway 118 near Moorpark.
(5) Sand and bags are available at Fire Station No. 65 in Agoura Hills.
Joe Binoya/Special to the Daily News