Light rains in Southern California have caused concern for some homeowners, whose properties may be endangered by mudslides and flash flooding. NBC Los Angeles reports that between 3 and 6 inches of rain are expected to fall on communities in the region, whose mountain location puts them at risk for damage from the elements.
As of Monday, more than 20,000 sand bags had been distributed to locals in Glendora, where the rain could cause significant problems through Wednesday. San Fernando Valley and San Gabriel Valley also received voluntary evacuation orders, for residents living in disaster-prone areas below hills and mountains.
"Last year during the flash flood they said it came down at 60 miles an hour," resident Ed Heinlein told NBC. "I'm gone beyond nervous, I'm down to the grim reality of you fight it, you do what you can, you deal with it. You can't sit around worrying about it, you work through it."
The perennial risk of damage is a concern to homeowners, whose insurance may not cover mudslides. According to NetQuote, most standard homeowners' policies don't, while the incidents are reported to cause as much as $2 billion in damage each year. To avert as much damage as possible, the use of sandbags and limiting obstructions to the flow of debris are small protections residents can take to reduce destruction. Moving cars, outdoor furniture and garbage cans to safety can prevent objects from inflicting damage on properties.
Mudslides are both disastrous for real estate and dangerous to individuals: Each year, between 25 and 50 people are killed by slipping ground. Property owners near sensitive areas should follow official directives, update their insurance policies and be diligent about safety precautions.