• What the Heavy Storms Are Doing to the Southland

    LOS ANGELES (CNS) – The rain that has drenched the Southland since
    Thursday has led to a spike in car crashes and power outages, and a record-
    number of calls for roadside assistance, based on numbers compiled today.

    The Los Angeles Fire Department responded to 146 collisions yesterday,
    55 percent more than it does on an average day, said LAFD spokesman Erik Scott.
    Paramedics took 554 people to the hospital yesterday, 5 percent more than
    usual, and responded to a total of 1,227 incidents — 21 percent more than on
    dry days.
    So far today, the LAFD has responded to 501 calls, which included five
    for downed wires and five for flooding.
    Officials with the Automobile Club of Southern California reported that
    they received more calls for help yesterday than they have ever received during
    a 24 hour-period. More than 25,000 Auto Club members called for help with stuck
    cars, dead batteries and flooded engines. That represents a 14 percent increase
    over the previous record, which was set at 22,000 calls during a heat wave on
    Oct. 9, 2008.
    “Monday was our highest volume day, and our preparations enabled us to
    deliver service to the majority of members in 30 minutes,” Auto Club spokesman
    Jeffrey Spring said. “The rest of the week is shaping up to be a very wet time
    on the roads and we will continue to staff up our call centers and contractor
    network to service our members when they need us most.”
    The rain has also left 13,678 Southern California Edison customers
    without power, SCE spokeswoman Lauren Bartlett said. This includes 727 in
    Mammoth Lakes, which SCE crews cannot reach because of snow, 455 in Claremont,
    354 in Diamond Bar and 50 in Chino.
    The utility is scheduling repairs based on how long customers have been
    without power, with those in the dark the longest being served first, Bartlett
    No one with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power was
    unavailable with figures for outages in the city.

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