Eight Die in Fire as Freezing Temperatures Hit South Too


"The hillsides are still very, very wet, and we're doing everything we can to avoid a repeat of last week's situation. On Wednesday the city of Highland was hit with super heavy rain and there was major runoff," information officer for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Bill Peters told ABC News.

"We ended up with homes inundated with mud and in a small community called The Villages, homes were buried in mud about 3 to 4 feet deep. Mud slides caused cars to be buried in the mud. Cars were sticking out at 45 degree angles – the mud lifted up the rear end and buried the front end," Peters said.

Sandbags have been placed across the city to prevent mudslides. "Thirty-nine of our inmate firefighter crews – 14 person crews – have been out since last Thursday working 12 to 14 hours a day, and in some instances 24 hours a day. We've laid down over 100,000 sandbags throughout the city."

La Canada Flintridge in the Pasadena area and Laguna Beach also suffered from runoff damage last week and have sustained those damages.

"Until we get a few weeks for the hillsides to dry out, any rain can create runoff conditions that can cause flooding. Depending on how the rain falls in Southern California, we can end up with widespread damage," Peters said.

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