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Mandatory Evacuations In Lake Elsinore, Trabuco Canyon Lifted After Major Storm

LAKE ELSINORE (CBSLA) — Crews were cleaning up mud and debris flows Thursday after thousands of homes in the Lake Elsinore, Corona and Trabuco Canyon areas were evacuated due to a another round of heavy rain.

Late this afternoon, surging storm water swallowed up a few hundred feet of the concrete wall in the Laguna Canyon culvert. The collapse forced two dozen adults and children to evacuate from the nearby Boys and Girls Club of Laguna Beach.

A flash flood warning was issued for parts of Orange and Riverside counties that expired at 10:45 a.m. The area was burned by the Holy Fire last year, and now gets hit with flooding and mudflows with every heavy rainstorm since then.

In and around Lake Elsinore, mandatory evacuation orders were issued for the areas of Amorose, Alberhill, Alvarado A, Glen Eden, Glen Ivy A and B, Grace, Horsethief A and B, Laguna A, Maitri, McVicker A, Rice and Withrow A. Those evacuations were downgraded to warnings by Thursday night.

A mandatory evacuation order issued for resident in Trabuco Creek in Orange County was also lifted, but some roads remained closed in the area.

An evacuation center was set up at Temescal Canyon High School in Lake Elsinore and small animals were being accepted at the San Jacinto Animal Campus, 581 S. Grand Ave. in San Jacinto.

Trabuco Creek flooding
Trabuco Creek in the Trabuco Canyon area of Orange County floods during a rainstorm. Feb. 14, 2019.

In Orange County, Trabuco Creek overflowed, turning nearby roadways into muddy streams and prompting mandatory evacuations Thursday morning for homeowners along the creek.

"There's some boulders in the road, and I saw one boulder get swiped into the road, considering not going to work," one driver told CBS2. The man, who was delivering Valentine's Day flowers to his girlfriend, was forced to turn around.

Trabuco Canyon Road was closed at Rose Canyon and at Plano Trabuco until further notice, along with Trabuco Creek Road. Live Oak Canyon Road was closed between El Toro and Santiago Canyon roads. Voluntary evacuation warnings were issued for homes within the Rose Canyon and the Mystic Oaks/El Cariso areas.

The areas hit by the Holy Fire are expected to get up to three inches of rain Thursday, and more showers on Friday.

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