San Pedro, Long Beach Hit Hard by Storm

Storm drains have been overwhelmed resulting in flooding

The southernmost tip of Los Angeles has been particularly hard-hit by the storm series battering the Southland, according to the director of the Bureau of Sanitation said Wednesday.

Enrique Zaldivar told the Los Angeles City Council that the San Pedro and harbor areas, as well as Long Beach, received close to 1.5 inches of rain in a span of about half an hour on Tuesday.

"That's the equivalent of a hundred-year storm or worse," Zaldivar said. "That's an awful lot of rain."

He said it was equivalent to about 15 percent of Los Angeles' rainfall for all of 2009.

Storm drains were overwhelmed by the deluge, resulting in flooding, but Zaldivar said he dispatched 10 crews to pump out floodwater and clear the drains of debris overnight. Three crews were on duty Wednesday, he said.

On the positive side, he said the city's upgraded storm drains -- which have specialized grills -- have managed to keep 60 percent of debris from going into the sewers and eventually flowing out to the ocean.

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