Floodwaters Wreak Havoc in Cathedral City
Photo: Video by kmir6.com
CATHEDRAL CITY - Flooding has forced the closure of Highway 111 and the evacuation of a mobile home park in Cathedral City.
Officials with the city say the Eagle Canyon Dam Levee broke, causing the closure of East Palm Canyon from Golf Club Drive to Cathedral Canyon.
Crews are cleaning up after rushing floodwaters trapped drivers, forced evacuations, and damaged businesses.
City officials say Highway 111 is expected to remain closed from Cathedral Canyon and Golf Club Drive until at least 6am Friday.
In Cathedral City, Highway 111 was no longer visible.
Businesses and homes were flooded, and people became trapped by the rushing floodwaters.
Cathedral City resident, Johnny Coladonato, pulled into a gas station in the thick of it.
"I got really blessed that I was able to pull into this Valero and park at higher ground, but there were cars getting washed out, as you can see it's a total disaster over here," said Coladonato.
In fact, we were separated in the interview by the water.
"A little river of mud and water, probably about two feet deep," said Coladonato.
After Johnny threw back the microphone, we found Caroldean Ross, owner of Resale Therapy, a business right in the path of the raging waters.
"My business looks like Lake Resale Therapy, we're actually deciding if we're going to have jetskis tours in there," said Ross.
Caroldean walked through her store ankle-deep in water.
They were supposed to have a grand opening party Saturday.
"I can't even imagine what the damage is, you look at it, seriously you can't even walk around in there, there's mud everywhere, there's water everywhere, and just how fast it happened is mind-boggling," said Ross.
The fast-moving flood forced some people at the Tramview Park to evacuate, but manager Janet Caudill couldn't even get out.
"I looked out and it was a wall of water like a raging river that just came in. I couldn't get out it came in that fast, I waded up to my knees in water," said Janet.
"I understand that the water comes from across the street and just rolls right in through here, right on down," said Janet's husband, Steve Caudill.
Eagle Canyon Dam Levee broke - just like it did years ago- clean-up will take a while.
"Based on when this occurred a couple years ago, it was much worse, and it took several days," said Lt. Charles Robinson with Cathedral City Police.
Vehicles washed down the road, tow trucks had to pull out trapped cars.
"His car was submerged and floating around in the Valero, and we couldn't do anything about it and now we have to try to get it out of here. Because we were just trapped right over the wall, so now we're just trying to get it out of the gas station. And grandma's place flooded and stuff like that," said mother and daughter, Bridgette and Danuta.
Chad Shupp and Dino Terracciano took video up in the mountains of the rushing waters flowing downhill.
"It's insane, we grabbed a burrito earlier at Del Taco like four or five hours ago and we came back to chaos. Yeah to ruins."
Now the clean-up: repairing stores, homes, driveways and moving several feet of mud from Highway 111.