A strong wind and rain storm wreaked havoc on Southern California over the weekend and Newport Beach didn’t go unnoticed.
“Trees were our biggest issue,” said Public Works Municipal Operations Director Mike Pisani.
The city received approximately 140 tree calls, 90 of them being city trees and the rest on private property, Pisani reported.
A video of a barge at the Santa Ana River mouth floating out to sea and sinking was posted on social media page “Costa Mesa Buzz” by CM resident Andrew Smith.
Elsewhere on social media photos of flooding and fallen trees were shared.
Although Newport Beach Police Department didn’t report any major damage and Harbor Resources Department hadn’t heard about any sunk or capsized boats.
City and outside contractor’s crews worked throughout the community all week long to clear debris, particularly any blocking streets or traffic lanes. Back Bay Drive closed on Jan. 20 due to flooding and some fallen trees and rock slides.
A lot of trash and vegetation washed up as well. There were “hundreds of tons” of debris, Pisani estimated.
“It was stacked up on the beach,” he said.
In West Newport, crews gathered and piled up debris near Orange Street and a contracted trucking company spent two days hauling it all away.
Debris was still getting washed down several days after the rain stopped. They will continue to monitor and clean up, Pisani said. There was also quite a bit of wind blown sand.
Quantity-wise, there was a lot more than normal, he added. It created so much debris because it was such a big storm and it lasted several days in a row.
“It was biggest one we’ve had in quite a few years,” Pisani said. “There were no big issues, thankfully.”
He didn’t hear of any flooding into buildings or homes.
The city was providing sand bags, but not a lot of residents needed them, Pisani noted. People have learned what to do so they don’t get caught unprepared, he added.
The city is trying to work quickly and comprehensively so that the entire city is being covered and no area is forgotten, Pisani said.