NEAR IRVINE (CBSLA) – Several mudslides were reported late Thursday night and early Friday morning in Silverado Canyon east of Irvine as a powerful storm pummeled the region.
The mudslides occurred in the burn scars for the Bond and Silverado fires, which both tore through the region late last year.READ MORE: Single-Engine Plane Catches Fire After Crash Near Big Bear City Airport
There were no reports of injuries. Earlier in the day Thursday, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office issued a voluntary evacuation warning for residents in Silverado Canyon, Williams Canyon and Modjeska Canyon.
The mud was piled up near several homes in the 28000 block of Silverado Canyon Road. Some vehicles were buried under the dirt. One home had mud piled directly up to the entire frontside of the home. It’s unclear if the mud got inside the home itself.
Several residents had dug trenches, put up plywood and stacked sandbags in preparation, and it paid off.
“It’s a big mess, and we knew it was probably gonna be the messiest time of our life, a lot of cleanup is coming, but we definitely got very, very lucky,” Silverado Canyon homeowner Christine Kaatz told CBSLA Friday.
For the most part, residents of the canyon said they felt lucky the storm didn’t cause any serious damage.
“We heard some rumbling, and then some of these rocks about the size of bowling balls came down, and we turned the light on, and we saw this mud come down and we thought, ‘Oh no, here it comes,'” Ambrose Jimenez, a Silverado Canyon resident, said. “But then that’s it. It stopped.”
Jimenez said the mud stopped right at his backdoor and credited the straw bales and sandbags he just finished lining up on the hillside scarred by the Bond Fire just before the storm hit.READ MORE: Several Cows Escape From Meatpacking Plant In Pico Rivera, 1 Killed By Deputies; At Least 1 Person Injured
Orange County officials said the slides may have been caused when drainage pipes got blocked, causing mud and water to flow down the street. Orange County crews were driving up and down roads to clear the debris and mud and reopen them.
Only people who live in the area were being allowed in.
Rain was still falling Friday morning, but not as heavily as it was Thursday night.
Other burn areas — such as the Bobcat Fire burn scar in Monrovia, and the El Dorado Fire burn scar in Yucaipa — had not experienced any significant mudslides as of Friday morning.
— Tina Patel (@tina_patel) January 29, 2021
The 7,300-acre Bond Fire broke out in Silverado Canyon Dec. 2, spurred on by powerful Santa Ana winds. It started as a house fire before spreading into nearby brush, destroyed at least 31 structures and damaged another 21 more. It forced thousands of people to flee.MORE NEWS: Huge Waves, High Tides Raises Fears Of Coastal Flooding In Newport Beach
The 13,400 acre Silverado Fire also broke out in the Silverado Canyon area on Oct. 26, burning 13,400 acres and forcing more than 90,000 to evacuate. No homes were destroyed.