77 L.A. County crashes: ‘People don’t know how to drive in the rain’

Alvaro Sanchez, left, Jack Watson, center and Salvador Segura fill sand bags at a Glendora city yard. Glendora residents living in and around the area of the Colby fire collected sand bags to protect their residences from the possibility of flash flooding and mud and debris flows caused by expected rains.
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

California Highway Patrol officers responded to 77 crashes overnight on freeways throughout Los Angeles County, a spike they attributed to one thing: “Drivers. People don’t know how to drive in the rain.”

“They need to slow down,” Officer Jennifer Cassidy added.

No one died in any of the wrecks between 10 p.m. Wednesday and 2 a.m. Thursday, Cassidy said. Instead there were crashes “here and there” and overturned big rigs, among other incidents, she said.

The daily average of crashes on L.A. County freeways was not immediately clear, but in a similar time frame the week before, there were only 15 crashes.

A storm system began dumping light to moderate rain across the county Wednesday night. It’s the first of two storms that will strike the region through Saturday.

The second storm is predicted to drop 1 to 3 inches of rain in the coasts and valleys and 3 to 6 inches of rain in the foothills and mountains. Forecasters say thunderstorms are also possible, with damaging winds, small hail and even weak tornadoes possible.


Police departments across the county have sent out a flurry of advisories warning motorists of the rain and instructing them to be careful.


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