California mudslides strand travelers


(NewsNation) — Heavy rains hit the San Bernardino Mountains in Southern California Saturday, causing dangerous flash floods and mudslides. The power of Mother Nature was captured on video by the Rehmer family.

Parts of Valley of the Falls Drive in Forest Falls were closed, with crews working to reopen the road in the Snow Creek area, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said in a release.

Bianca Rehmer and her family were caught in the middle of the storm on their way home from a day trip in the Big Bear area when they encountered the massive mudslide in Forest Falls.

“We were starting to hike down to the creek, and then it kind of started sprinkling. Then it started thundering and then it really started pouring,” Bianca Rehmer recalled.

The Rehmers were able to make it back to their car after the rain started, but hit the mudslide on the way down the mountain.

Mud, rocks, debris and even large tree trunks flowed over the highway, making the road impassible.

“We’re driving down, you can see all this water just rushing down the roads. And then we got to that point, we hit the mudslide. And I was like, I can’t go any further,” Bianca said.

It was at that moment that Bianca’s husband pulled out his phone and recorded the stream of debris. They took shelter in the driveway of a nearby home and the community provided them with support.

“It was just really amazing to see the community just jump together really quickly to like, help out all these strangers,” she said.

A second video showed the aftermath as crews began clearing Valley of the Falls Drive, which was closed Saturday evening.

The Rehmers live just 15 minutes away in Mentone, California, and Bianca said the incident isn’t going to stop them from returning to the Big Bear area.

“It happened we had that mudslide, but maybe it kind of cleared everything away for everything to start going fresh and come back to life,” she said.

Elsewhere in the San Bernardino Mountains, four adults and three children had to be rescued when they became trapped by floodwaters. Search and Rescue crews utilized a rope system to get the group across a swollen creek.

Drivers were “advised to use an alternate route” as roads were closed by authorities, though local residents were allowed in.

No one was injured from the storm, floods or mudslides.

NewsNation affiliate KTLA contributed to this report.

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