Officials monitoring neighborhood after mudslide

(KGO)
November 16, 2012 5:34:04 PM PST
Water inspectors in Daly City Friday were checking on a neighborhood hit with a dangerous mudslide earlier this week after an old water pipe broke sending so much water that a hill nearly washed away.

City officials monitored the site near Whyandotte Avenue and Bismark Street Friday. The precarious hillside will most certainly continue to shift with a heavy downpour and residents can only wait and worry. "Of course, you can never avoid thinking about it. What will be next? We're scared," resident Emee Bautista said.

On Tuesday morning, a huge gully was carved by just under 98,000 gallons of water gushing from a broken water line. City officials believe the age of the pipe was a factor. Down below, residents were left with mounds of mud and debris. Several homes had to be evacuated.

Bautista can see a gaping hole left by the mudslide from her home. From her perspective, it doesn't look secure. "I'm scared to leave the house. I'm so scared to leave the house," she told ABC7 News. The flood of water that invaded her street when a pipe broke Tuesday is what she's afraid of. The concern is that rain could shake loose an already weakened hillside.

Knowing a storm was approaching, the city responded quickly to keep the soil in place. Hay bales were lined up alongside the park. Jute netting was secured to the ground for erosion and sediment control. Any runoff coming from the hill will be diverted to a water drain. Straw waddles and large boulders will help keep any debris from clogging the drain.

"It's not enough because the water is so strong," Bautista said. However, some of her neighbors disagree and say they have confidence in the city's plans. "I feel safe because the city is already prepared for everything," resident Ed David said. Still, he didn't feel good enough to leave his car on the side of the street, especially after what happened when the mud gushed in Tuesday. "It was street cleaning this morning then I have to move it right away because I'm afraid of the rain," he said.

City officials say they think residents should feel safe. Crews left a backhoe behind as a precautionary measure, but point out that all the water came gushing down Tuesday in about 30 minutes. So, even if it rains a lot this weekend, it won't happen that fast. Crews will be on standby Friday evening and all through the weekend. Neighbors have been told that Daly City police will also patrol the area Friday evening. "Hope for the best," Arturo Romero said.


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