Watch: LASD cruiser pulled from floodwaters in aftermath of Tropical Storm Hilary

Once deputies realized the water was above the tires of the SUV, they called for backup

By Sarah Roebuck

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office came to the aid of one of their own after a cruiser became trapped in deep floodwaters. 

The deputy was in Whitter Narrows recreations area when the cruiser drove over a road that had become impassable due to rising floodwaters, trapping the cruiser, KCAL reports.  

Once deputies realized the water was above the tires of the SUV, they called for backup. Four more units arrived at the scene to help tow the cruiser out of the water. 

Tropical Storm Hilary was the first tropical storm to hit Southern California in 84 years, bringing floods, mudslides, high winds, power outages and the potential for isolated tornadoes, the Associated Press reports.

Mud and large rocks cascaded onto the highways, while water surged onto the roadways, and tree branches descended within residential areas spanning from San Diego to Los Angeles. Numerous vehicles became ensnared in floodwaters, an unusual sight in the typically arid and warm Palm Desert and the neighboring communities throughout the Coachella Valley. Emergency teams worked diligently to extract floodwaters from the premises of Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage.

In Palm Springs, 911 phone lines were temporarily unavailable due to floodwaters. The department said in an update that 911 calls were being routed to their call center.

Later in the afternoon on Sunday, Southern California experienced an unexpected event — a 5.1 magnitude earthquake struck near Ojai, situated approximately 80 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles, as reported by the U.S. Geological Survey. The tremor was widely felt and was succeeded by minor aftershocks. As per a dispatcher from the Ventura County Sheriff's Office, there were no immediate accounts of significant damage or injuries.


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