Mudslides Force Evacuation Orders in Orange County

SILVERADO CANYON (CNS) - Overnight rains saturated hillsides in Silverado Canyon today, prompting a mudslide that trapped some vehicles and led authorities to issue a mandatory evacuation order for the Bond Fire area.

No injuries were immediately reported from the slide, which occurred at about 7 a.m., sending thick mud cascading onto Silverado Canyon Road between roughly Ladd Canyon Road and Olive Drive.

Silverado Canyon Road was closed between the 241 Toll Road and Modjeska Grade Road as crews descended on the area with bulldozers and other equipment to clear the muck from the roadway.

With more rain anticipated to fall in the area, the Orange County Sheriff's Department issued a mandatory evacuation order late Wednesday morning for residents in Modjeska and Williams canyons as well.

It was not immediately clear if any homes were damaged by the morning mudslide.

According to the National Weather Service, more than a half-inch of rain fell over a roughly three-hour period in the area, which was the location of December's Bond Fire that burned more than 6,600 acres.

“They've got at least four mudslides'' in the fire-scarred canyons, said Carrie Braun of the Orange County Sheriff's Department. Three of the mudslides were considered minor, she added.

“Public works is out there working with the (Orange County Fire Authority) to remove the debris, and that's going to take at least a couple of hours to make the roads passable,'' Braun said at about 10:30 a.m. “There are also some mudslides on private property so we're looking into reports of that.''

The American Red Cross has set up shop at El Modena High School, 3920 E. Spring St., to help residents find safe shelter.

A hotline for residents in Silverado, Williams and Modjeska canyons has been set up at 714-628-7085. Those with disabilities who need help evacuating should call sheriff's deputies at 714-647-7000, and those who need help relocating pets or large animals should call Orange County Animal Care at 714-935-6848.

Copyright 2021, City News Service, Inc.

Photo: Getty Images

Copyright 2021, City News Service, Inc.

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