• BREAKING NEWS ABC shows live and on-demand -- Download the WATCH ABC app!

Heavy rains may trigger flooding, mudslides

March 5, 2010 12:49:37 AM PST
People living in the Station Fire burn areas are once again bracing for heavy rains that could cause flooding and trigger mudslides.Residents may face evacuations again. Some of them have been asked to leave their homes six times in the last eight months, and many are tired of it.

Public works crews have been frequent visitors to the area. For the past couple of months crews have been clearing out the debris basins. But almost as soon as they think their work is done another storm brings more mud and debris.

But residents say their work is welcome.

"It's just been tremendous. The basins just fill up and hoards of trucks come up and they empty them all out. Some days it seems like there is 10 trucks going down the main street. You feel like you're going to be run over, but I know that is what they have to do," said Glendale resident, Carrie Fonda.

Because the debris basins are far from clear, authorities are warning more evacuations in foothill communities are possible.

"It's not the city or the county and the fire (department's) fault, it's just Mother Nature. She keeps planning these rains on the weekends," said Oliva Brown. "I'm getting used to having weekends with no plans."

There is concern of overflow from the debris basins getting into neighborhoods.

"I heard it's like 30 percent full. The way they are telling it, even more than 10 percent might be dangerous," said Mike Thomassian of La Canada Flintridge.

Other Southern California communities have seen the ground give way due to rain. Crews on Mulholland Drive are still working to fix the damaged roadway from heavy rain.

In order to prepare for the storm all county roads in the 250-square-mile Station Fire burn area will be shut down starting at 2 a.m. Saturday.

While some people have stayed to try to protect their homes during past evacuation orders, La Canada Flintridge resident Gary Stibal helped put things in perspective.

"Our lives are more precious than our homes," said Stibal. "Our home values are zero, so if we lose our homes then we lose our homes. We don't want to lose our lives."