Heavy rain triggers floods, prompts rescues

BIG BEAR LAKE, Calif.

The latest winter storm system created some dangerous situations. Seven people had to be rescued Thursday from the Santa Ana River Wash near Colton. Heavy rain created a swift river, trapping the seven individuals. One man had to be hoisted to safety by a rescue helicopter after he was found clinging to a tree.

"The victim was located up in a tree, surrounded by rapid water. The location in the tree actually made it somewhat more difficult for the air operation and the rescuers to get a clean access at the victim," described Loma Linda Fire Chief Jeff Bender.

In another rescue Thursday near Redlands, a heavy downpour created a river of mud that washed right over the road, trapping a pickup truck with the driver still inside. The driver was rescued and bulldozers were brought in to open up the roads.

Rain also caused headaches in the Antelope Valley. Heavy rain fell overnight, flooding streets in Lancaster. The high rain volume created enough pressure to lift a manhole cover at the intersection of Avenue I and 20th Street East. City workers brought in pumps to remove the water, because the rain overwhelmed the area gutters.

The Antelope Valley also saw thunder, lightning and even hail. No damage was reported, but the wild weather did leave behind a thick layer of slush.

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