San Diego

Dozens of Families Still Homeless Following Last Week's Storm in San Diego

Nearly 50 people remain at a Red Cross Evacuation shelter after flooding during last week's storm badly damaged their homes and apartments.

Zury Guerrero says all she could do was grab her three kids and get out.

“As soon as my opened my door water was just like pouring inside like crazy,” she said.

Guerrero and others living on the ground level of their apartment complex on National Avenue were forced to move out.

“My clothes, shoes, all that stuff got really damaged, you know I had to throw everything away because dirty water was coming in. It was horrible,” Guerrero said.

A couple dozen people from the complex, including Rosalba Gaytan, are staying at the Red Cross’s emergency shelter set up at a Paradise Valley church.

Gaytan says it’s a tough time of year, especially for children, to have lost everything.

“Some of them have Christmas trees, they already have presents,” she said.

Despite the hardship, she says staff at the shelter are doing what they can to make things easier on them.

“They are so nice. They are helping us,” she said.

The Red Cross worked with the landlord of the complex so that residents could get deposits and money back to help them find temporary housing.

Candace Powell, a Red Cross volunteer and program lead for the case team, says the biggest need is trying to find short-term rentals for the next couple of months while their apartments are being repaired.

“What our goal in casework is, is to try and help them figure out the next steps for the recovery,” Powell said.

But that won’t be easy because the rent they have been paying is around $800 per month.

Residents told NBC 7 they believe the City of San Diego should help with emergency funding because debris in Chollas Creek that flowed into their homes has been piling up for months, if not years, and had the city cleaned it up they would not be homeless.

A City spokesperson said they are still investigating to determine if the city is liable in any way.

Whatever the city can provide won’t be a quick fix, so the Red Cross is hoping landlords with affordable housing availability will contact them to help out, especially since Christmas is only a couple of weeks away.

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