Saturday :: Jan 23, 2010

Southern California's Torrential Rains


by Mary

This morning a news bulletin talked about the massive rain fall in Southern California and mentioned that the debris basins were full.

You might wonder, what the heck are debris basins?

They are the football field-sized man-made holes at the base of the San Gabriel mountains which were dug to catch the massive boulders and debris that are sloughed off the mountains during torrential rains. I wrote about this here when I recommended John McPhee's book which has a vivid description of the phenomena LA is experiencing now. Fortunately it appears that this year, LA has been spared the worst of it.

Cannon said the mountains ended up getting less rain than forecasters had predicted, and that helped tremendously. The most powerful cells from the storms veered away from the Station fire burn area, she said.

...But Spencer and Schmidt cautioned that the preparations won't be enough if heavier rains soak the mountains.

"We want to prevent a sense of complacency," Schmidt said Friday. "It's not like crying wolf. It wasn't worse, because the rainfall intensity and its duration was not as high as forecasted. If we had gotten what was forecasted, it would have been a lot worse."

Mary :: 12:33 AM :: Comments (1) :: Digg It!