Floodwaters Trigger Evacuations in Orange and Riverside Counties, Submerge Cars, Prompt Rescues

Cars ended up underwater in Costa Mesa Thursday as streets flooded to levels as high as four feet, authorities said.

Drivers were warned to stay out of the flooded areas and find alternate routes Thursday afternoon, Costa Mesa Police Department officials said in a written statement.

Water submerges cars at 17th Street and Pomona Avenue in Costa Mesa during a storm on Dec. 6, 2018. (Credit: Costa Mesa Police Department)

Water submerges cars at 17th Street and Pomona Avenue in Costa Mesa during a storm on Dec. 6, 2018. (Credit: Costa Mesa Police Department)

Flooded intersections included 19th Street and Anaheim Avenue; 19th Street and Park Drive; 18th Street and Anaheim Avenue; and 17th Street and Pomona Avenue, where at least two vehicles were seen submerged. One vehicle was covered nearly to its roof, while water rose well above the hood of another.

There were no initial reports of injuries.

A Los Angeles County Fire Department Urban Search & Rescue task force had to hoist a homeless man from a flood control channel amid swiftly flowing water at Lambert Road and Monte Vista avenue, La Habra Police Department and county fire officials said.

The waters were dislodging manhole covers sending them floating down the road at Bristol Street and Edinger Avenue, as well as at Santiago Street and Civic Center Drive, Santa Ana Police Department officials said via Twitter. Motorists were advised to use “extreme caution.”

Meanwhile, mandatory evacuations were ordered in recent burn areas of both Orangeand Riverside counties as the threat of flooding and debris flows continued to loom.

Click here for a full list of evacuation orders and flood advisories surrounding the storm.