Wednesday, August 6, 2014

mountain flood costs rising


Volunteers and firefighters on Goat Hill Road in Mount Baldy: Aug. 5

Update 9:29 a.m. Valley of the Falls Drive and Prospect Drive in Forest Falls were open to the public Wednesday morning, San Bernardino County officials tweeted. Countywide damage estimates from Sunday's flash floods were approaching $11 million. 

Posted 6:59 a.m. Emergency response costs to boulder-laden flash floods Aug. 3 in Mount Baldy and Forest Falls were estimated at $9.76 million as of Tuesday morning and expected to rise, San Bernardino County's emergency services manager told the Board of Supervisors.

Public assistance and individual assistance in the wake of Sunday's debris flows totaled $5.26 million and $4.5 million respectively, county OES manager Mike Antonucci said Aug. 5 in San Bernardino.

In Mt. Baldy, 12 homes were severely damaged and seven sustained moderate damage, according to county officials.

Forest Home, the ministry that runs several camps in Forest Falls, issued a "Disaster Relief 2014" appeal for donations Tuesday.

"Preliminary estimates for repair are over $750,000," Forest Home's executive director Gary Wingerd said in a statement. "At this time, we are not sure what part insurance will play in these costs, if any.

"We do know from past weather events like this that there could be hundreds of thousands of dollars of repairs that will not be covered by insurance," the statement said. "The work must be done quickly to prevent further damage."

Utility and road work below Slide Creek in Forest Falls: Aug. 5

Many home insurance policies do not cover losses from "moving earth," county Board of Supervisors chair Janice Rutherford told her colleagues Tuesday morning.

An estimated 4.7 inches of rain were recorded Sunday afternoon in Mount Baldy. Records indicate it was the most intense storm to hit the village since historic rains and flooding in 1969, county fire spokeswoman Tracey Martinez said at the Baldy fire station.

Photos by Guy McCarthy

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