Thunderstorm Spawns Huge Slide In Eastern CA

INDEPENDENCE, Calif. (AP) - A huge mudslide has forced nearly a
dozen people from their homes in Independence, on the east side of
the Sierra Nevada.

Severe thunderstorms Saturday spawned a mudslide 300 yards wide
and up to three feet deep, according to Janet Upton, a spokeswoman
for CalFire.

The slide oozed across Highway 395, forcing the C-H-P to detour
traffic early Sunday morning. Authorities found a few people trapped in their homes and helped evacuate them to a school. And some of the mud entered the Los Angeles Aqueduct.

But the Upton says the rain in Independence, east of Fresno, did not help efforts to combat fires elsewhere in the state. It takes several inches of rain in a short period to help douse blazes, she says.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-07-13-08 1317EDT

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