Parts of Glendora and Azusa affected by the Colby Fire last month are now facing mandatory evacuations as the heavy rain expected this weekend poses the thread of mudslides.
The burned areas are at a higher risk for flooding, mudslides and debris buildup during periods of rain.
Properties north of Sierra Madre Avenue between the western city boundaries of Azusa and Glendora, and the east side of Loraine Street were on “orange alert,” earlier this week with voluntary evacuations encouraged.
On Thursday the voluntary evacuation was changed to mandatory evacuation that will affect 1,000 Azusa and Glendora residents.
During this time, residents are directed to remove vehicles, trash bins and other obstructions from streets that can be swept away by the rain and mud.
“Start taking measure to protect your home like sandbagging and boarding up windows. Mud and debris flows are some of the most dangerous natural disasters,” said Chris Jeffers, Glendora city manager.
“It doesn’t take much water – about 12 inches – to move a 3,000 pound boulder.”
“Get a contact list, collect personal items and secure your belongings to the highest point in your home,” Jeffers said.
“The risks of staying in your house could be severe,” said L.A. County Fire Department inspector Scott Miller.
“One of the things that you have to be cognizant of with a mudslide is that it’s going to impede your evacuation routes,” Miller said. “It happens at an extremely fast pace and most people get complacent and think that they have a lot of time to prepare to get out of their houses when it’s simply not the case.”
Jeffers recognized the city of La Verne for donating 1,000 sandbags to Glendora residents.
Crews are also ready with 10,000 feet of K-rails to stop and divert mud flow.
“When first responders give any instruction to residents, please heed it,” Jeffers said.
A flash flood warning is also in effect for the areas that were affected by the fire.
An evacuation center has been set up at the Crowther Teen and Family Center located at 241 W. Dawson Ave., Glendora.
Glendora residents can get sandbags at the City Yard any time of the day or night at 440 S. Loraine Ave.
To stay up-to-date on the mudslide alerts, visit cityofglendora.org/colbyfire.
Hayley Hulin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kat Simonelli can be reached at kathryn.simonelli@laverne .edu.