Mudslides damage homes in OC neighborhoods

ANAHEIM, Calif. Dove Canyon
Mud and debris have forced residents of a private community in Orange County to evacuate their homes. The mudslides flowed into the area of Dove Canyon in the city of Rancho Santa Margarita at about 5:15 a.m.

Rescuers arrived to find mud and debris blocking their road, and it only got worse as they traveled downhill, down Bell Canyon Road.

"When I stepped off the engine, (the mud) was about waist deep, and it was flowing rather rapidly," said Capt. George Casario of the Orange County Fire Authority.

Casario said they performed 60 rescues.

Evacuated resident Mary Carpenter said she had no time to pack.

"The kids are a little bit upset and worried and wondering what we're going to be doing the next couple of days," she said. "You just make it an adventure and not stress too much about it."

Cars and homes were sitting in about two to three feet of muddy water. According to authorities, five homes have been red-tagged.

Crews worked to clear the area with bulldozers.

San Juan Capistrano
A voluntary evacuation order has been issued for several homes in San Juan Capistrano near Paseo Adelanto and the San Juan Creek.

Authorities blame a broken irrigation pipe and heavy rain for huge chunks of earth breaking away from the side of Trabuco Creek.

Sheriff's deputies urged 400 families and 75 businesses next to the creek to leave.

"It's moving 45 to 50 mph, which makes it extremely dangerous," said Jim Amormino of the /*Orange County Sheriff's Department*/.

"I started packing, getting paperwork the pictures, the DVDs and I'm evaluating whether I'm going to stay or leave," said Lynne Redmer of San Juan Capistrano.

The evacuation order is not mandatory and is only being done as a precaution.

Williams and Modjeska canyons

In Williams Canyon, one of the roads looked like a river by Wednesday evening. Mandatory evacuations were still in effect for the area.

The water was so powerful, it turned an RV into a boat and turned a barn into a river.

In Modjeska Canyon, cars, barbeques and people were literally stuck in the mud.

Resident Dan Hare has lived in the area for 31 years, and he said it's "by far" the worst rain he has ever seen.

Silverado Canyon
Residents in Silverado Canyon have been under a mandatory evacuation order since 3:30 a.m. for mudslide danger. Homes near Bond Way and Kitterman Road were ordered to evacuate immediately, but many of them decided to stay put.

"I'm looking at my wife, thinking about my kids, and wondering when we should get going," said one resident.

Greg Perez of Silverado Canyon was busy all morning shoveling the mud away from his home.

"I have three horses in my front yard ... and I can't really get a trailer in here, so for all intents and purposes, we're on an island," he said.

Many cannot evacuate by car because several vehicles are buried under mud.

"(The mud) was supposed to aim towards the junker car that belongs to my neighbor, but it didn't work out," joked Stacey McNulty.

The intensity and speed of the water in Silverado Creek has been increasing rapidly, while residents stand by and watch, hoping their homes won't be flooded.

"We like living up here, so I think it's worth it to have to put up with something like this every once in awhile," said Angie Black of Silverado Canyon.

About 50 people are at the evacuation shelter set up at Calvary Chapel at 8002 Silverado Canyon Rd.Small animals can be taken to O.C. Animal Care Services, located at 561 The City Drive South in Orange.

No injuries have been reported.

Mandatory evacuations have been issued for the following roads in Silverado Canyon:

  • This A Way
  • That A Way
  • Grundy Lane
  • Sullman Lane
  • Bond
  • Kitterman
  • White Canyon
  • Monty Lane
  • Hide A Way
  • Anderson Way
  • By The Way

More Orange County evacuation shelters:

Laguna Beach High School
625 Park Ave.
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

El Modena High School
3920 Spring St.
Orange, CA 92869

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