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Mudslides, Flooding Strand Thousands In California

Strong rains unleashed flooding and mudslides in Southern California on Sunday, killing one and stranding thousands.

The Associated Press reports:

"A body was found Sunday in a car that was swept into the rain-swollen water course in Mount Baldy and overturned, San Bernardino County Fire spokesman Chris Prater said. No other details were provided.

"Further east, flash floods Sunday brought thick debris flows that cut off access to two towns. About 1,500 residents of Oak Glen, and another 1,000 residents of Forest Falls in the San Bernardino Mountains were unable to get out because the roads were covered with mud, rock and debris, authorities said.

"The stranded include 500 children and adults who had arrived at a Forest Falls campground Sunday morning."

Some of the television images showed dry creeks that turned into gushing rivers. They showed dramatic helicopter rescues and a van completely covered in mud and debris.

Here's one report from CNN:

The Los Angeles Times says the storms have shown little sign of letting up. The newspaper adds:

"Typically, weather patterns in the area calm down at night. But by about 7 p.m., some of the more significant weather cells appeared to be circulating back toward the Forest Falls area after pummeling the San Bernardino Mountains and stretches of the Angeles National Forest.

" 'The whole thing could be repeating itself,' [Fire Capt. Josh Wilkins] said. The county was considering putting out a call for assistance to neighboring communities."

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Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.