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Laguna fares well in storm

January 14, 2005

Lauren Vane

On Wednesday morning, Laguna Beach residents finally awoke to sunny

skies. As residents wring out the water, the city looks forward to

what the National Weather Service predicts will be a dry week.

Nearly six inches of rain fell in Laguna Beach during the brunt of

the storm from Friday to Tuesday, said Gregg Barton of the city's

water quality division.

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"That's a lot of water and I hope that's it," Barton said.

City officials said that Laguna weathered the storm without any

major problems. The local impact of the rain was limited to several

felled trees, minor mudslides and a multitude of large potholes that

sprung up on city streets, said Steve May, director of Public Works.

"Considering the amount of rain we received over the four-day

period, we did pretty well," May said.

Police closed Laguna Canyon Road at 4 p.m. Sunday from the San

Joaquin Tollroad to the San Diego Freeway due to flooding and debris

in the roadway, police said. All lanes of Laguna Canyon Road have now

been re-opened for traffic traveling both directions, police said.

There were several private properties that reported slides

resulting in damage to retaining walls and gas lines, May said. Any

problems that did arise as a result of the storm were cleared

quickly, May said.

"We kept a lot of staff on full time, 24 hours a day, during the

rains," May said.

Residents who experienced trouble with flooding or suspected a

mudslide called 911 and the fire department responded and determined

whether or not the situation was an emergency, said Fire Department

Battalion Chief Kris Head.

"Based on what's happened to date I would say that the city was

affected very little, but I say that with caution because landslides

can occur weeks after the rain event," Head said.

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