One dead, seven others pulled from flooded culvert in San Ysidro near border


One person died and seven others were injured in a rain-flooded storm drain system in San Ysidro on Friday afternoon, authorities said.

The incident started with a report from Border Patrol agents that a person was stuck in a flood culvert just east of the U.S.-Mexico border crossing, according to San Diego Fire-Rescue.

Fire crews arrived and started pulling people out of the water, the fire agency said. Shortly after 5 p.m., seven people were saved.

A few minutes later, rescuers reported that one person did not survive.


Three survivors were taken to a hospital; the other four did not want to go.

No further information on the incident was immediately available.

When it rains, authorities open the grates of that culvert to allow water to flow. When that happens, people sometimes try to illegally cross from Mexico into the United States.

Rescuers at the Friday incident included several firefighters and two lifeguard river rescue teams.

Figueroa writes for the San Diego Union-Tribune.


8:05 p.m. Jan. 29, 2021: This story was updated with information from U.S. Border Patrol Agent Jeffrey Stephenson.