Mistaken flash-flood warning sent in L.A. hours before polls close as storm batters Southern California
A woman passes a polling place after voting after the storm in West LA. Photo: Daniel Tchek/ Getty Images
A woman takes photos of her polling place after voting after the storm in West LA. Photo: Daniel Tchek/ Getty Images
Polling places in Southern California were evacuated after a warning from the National Weather Service that heavy rain was beginning to fall in the immediate area.
West LA, including Los Angeles, was the third in a row to be hit hard by the storm, which threatened to deliver some of the biggest storms ever to impact Southern California.
At least two of the areas hit hardest by the storm will likely be affected by flooding, officials said.
In Compton, a woman waiting in line for her polling place said she didn’t think she would need to evacuate immediately because the flooding looked minor.
“I hope it holds, but the rain was so fast and strong today. I don’t think I have to leave,” said the woman, who didn’t want her name used. She was standing in line outside her home and didn’t know if she would get her polling place back in two hours.
She estimated the water covered about one-third of her front yard by the end of the storm.
Many neighborhoods were flooded and it was difficult for even those without swimming pools to keep their feet from getting wet, said one man waiting in line in Chino Hills, which saw its flooding worst-case scenario.
“I went to the store to buy food, and all the cars were driving off the road, and the water was so high,” he said. “I lost my car. I’ve lost everything.”
Another man waiting in line in Bellflower said he saw a man with a bike with a broken wheel and was reminded not to stand in front of the man on bicycle, so he didn’t.
“I hope you know,” he said, adding that he would return to look for a replacement wheel for his bike.
The National Weather Service said it would send personnel into Compton and Beverly Hills to respond to any requests to evacuate.