Corona Residents Evacuate Because of Retaining Wall Collapse – NBC Los Angeles
Twenty-four residents from eight homes in Corona are unable to return home after their houses were red-tagged following the collapse of a nearby retaining wall.
It happened around 4:30 am Monday, according to Battalion Chief Robbie Peterson of the Corona Fire Department.
“Units arrived on scene to find the retaining wall that had come down and damaged one house immediately below the wall and cracked the concrete foundation above,” Peterson said.
Firefighters also found a lot of debris in the area including heavy cinderblocks. Luckily, no one was injured as those from the affected homes were inside at the time of the collapse.
“Residents were fortunate that no one was in the backyard,” Peterson said. “(The damaged) house had a broken sliding door.”
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The collapse of the retaining wall is making other residents nervous. One neighbor, who heard the wall crashing down in the early morning hours, described a harrowing morning.
“It’s very nerve-wrecking and scary,” Nick Werschmidt said. “Our wall had fallen in 2021 and damaged our neighbors below. Now our wall is the strongest in the neighborhood, but I feel so bad for the neighbors that this happened.”
Werschmidt said he and his family were unable to sleep at night, worried that his replaced wall would become weak in the recent storms, as well.
“With all the rain, I’m not sure how it’s built, but it seems walls are very fragile,” Werschmidt said.
While city officials are continuing to investigate what caused the wall to collapse, they are assuming the heavy amount of rain in the recent weeks had something to do with it.
“With the forecast of continued rain, we assume the rain and erosion cause the wall to fail,” Peterson said. “We want to take safety precautions for residents and make sure they’re safe from anymore earth coming down behind their houses.”
The City of Corona also issued evacuation warnings for other homes neighboring the retaining wall that spans a block. Currently the wall is not affecting any other properties, but residents are being urged to call 911 in case of an emergency.
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