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Students left in the dark due to storm

Updated: Mar 3, 2023

A recent storm brought damages to the Valley College campus.

By Cassandra Nava, Managing Editor

Valley College maintenance workers pump water out of the flooded east tunnel at the Central Plant on Wednesday. The tunnel carries water and electricity to numerous buildings on the east side of campus. The deluge has caused an electricity outage for most of the campus' facilities. (Griffin O'Rourke | Valley Star)

Due to the rain and flooding in and around Campus Center, Valley College suffered power issues Wednesday evening that darkened buildings and interrupted internet, network and telephone service in at least 16 buildings late Wednesday afternoon.

Evening students in buildings without power were relocated to Business Journalism and the Foreign Language building. In the meantime, maintenance workers pumped water out of the basement in Campus Center where the Alpha Data Center, the hub that controls the suspended services, is located.

The weekend storms brought more than 8 inches of rain and up to 10 mph winds which caused power outages and property damages for Los Angeles and neighboring cities, with foul weather persisting through yesterday.

“On Friday we lost power, and now it’s Wednesday and we still haven’t gotten power in our house,” said Valley student and administration of justice major Zoe Nguyen. “So we don’t have hot showers or lights at night. So we are using candle lights or flash lights to study.”

The storm that torpedoed through the state left waves of damage in its wake. Harsh winds caused trees to topple all over the San Fernando Valley, resulting in power outages as far out as Long Beach to Santa Clarita. As of Tuesday, the LADWP restored a total of 140,000 Angeleno’s services, while 7,600 residents remain without power.

In addition to the Campus Center flooding, Valley reported one leak in the Maintenance and Operations Building and multiple leaks in the unfinished Valley Academic and Cultural Center.

At the beginning of the school week, a handful of maintenance workers cut and removed a fallen tree on the southside of campus.

The large pin oak fell on the fence guarding the college’s water tank, damaging a portion of the chainlink barrier.

(Griffin O'Rourke/The Valley Star)

“The tree is old and all the rain loosened up the soil so with the winds, it pushed it over,” said Valley Gardening Supervisor Rudy Majano. “It happened yesterday or Saturday; I’m not sure.”

Although the recent weather will not eliminate California’s drought, it helped significantly. According to the LA Times, the largest reservoirs, Lake Oroville and Lake Shasta, were at a capacity of 71 percent and 59 percent. This shows an increase from two months ago when the lakes were at 29 percent and 32 percent. As of Feb. 23, the U.S. Drought Monitor map showed the state in a “moderate” drought, whereas a year ago it was in an “extreme” drought. Officials are waiting for the snow to melt to see how much impact it will have on the dry spell.

This story has been updated.


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