Landslide Endangers Four Apartment Buildings in San Clemente

SAN CLEMENTE (CNS) - Four apartment buildings in San Clemente were evacuated Wednesday due to a landslide that left the rear of the buildings in danger of tumbling down a hillside.

Orange County Fire Authority crews responded at around 8:20 a.m. to the 1500 block of Buena Vista and evacuated residents from the structures. The hillside behind the buildings gave way, leaving parts of the structures seemingly teetering over the edge.

No injuries were immediately reported.

The four buildings were all yellow tagged, meaning their habitability was limited, and city crews were on the scene to assess the structures, according to the Orange County Sheriff's Department. They were later downgraded to red-tagged, meaning it was too dangerous for them to be inhabited.

Residents were urged to avoid the area.

Buena Vista was closed from Avenida Florencio to Calle Colina, along with the beach trail below the landslide between North Beach and El Portal.

"We're coming up with a plan for what we're going to do next," OCFA Capt. Thanh Nguyen said of the agency's work with sheriff's deputies and city and utility officials.

"Our main concern right now is to evacuate everybody. We're closely watching the adjacent neighborhood here ... I would strongly encourage residents in the surrounding area to be prepared to evacuate should the (evacuation order) be extended."

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