Officials warn residents in burn areas to be vigilant ahead of rainstorm

BURBANK, Calif. (KABC) -- With another rainstorm on the way, officials are warning residents in burn areas - like Burbank and Tujunga Canyon - to be vigilant.

In January, debris flows were a big problem when rainstorms hit areas that had already been burned, so crews are scrambling to make sure debris basins in the affected areas are cleared and ready.

"Crews have been working in full rotation during business hours to clear out those basins, and all of the communities are ready to go," said Steven Frasher of Los Angeles County Public Works.

Public Works said all the debris basins in the burn zones are prepped for the upcoming storm, and county crews were finishing up work at both of the catch basins on Country Club Drive in the hills over Burbank.

Burbank's emergency management coordinator is expecting some road closures, but nothing like last month's problems.

"We will have debris flows, we will have some minor flooding and possibly flash floods, however we're not so much worried about the same type of event that caused widespread evacuations in Burbank or the same type of damage that occurred (in January)," said Eric Baumgardner of the Burbank Fire Department.

That's good news for residents like Tony McCormick, whose home sits right beneath the Lower Sunset Debris Basin.

"It came up over the top one time, but it goes down the street and we just get shut out where we can't get home," he said.

Meanwhile, the Kagel Canyon Fire Station had plenty of free sandbags available. All throughout the area, many private homes were already set for rain, while others had workers wrapping up diversion projects ahead of the storm.
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