Los Angeles flood of 1938

19381938 flood1938 floodsa three-day deluge of rainflood of 1938flood of March 1938flooding in 1938historic floodingLos Angeles floodsevere flooding
The Los Angeles flood of 1938 was one of the largest floods in the history of Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside Counties in southern California.wikipedia
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San Gabriel River (California)

San Gabriel RiverSan GabrielEast Fork
The Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Santa Ana Rivers burst their banks, inundating much of the coastal plain, the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys, and the Inland Empire.
Severe floods in 1914, 1934 and 1938 spurred Los Angeles County, and later the federal government to build a system of dams and debris basins, and to channelize much of the lower San Gabriel River with riprap or concrete banks.

Los Angeles County flood of 2005

2005near-record rainfall levels
These works have been instrumental in protecting Southern California from subsequent flooding events, such as in 1969 and 2005, which both had a larger volume than the 1938 flood.
The Los Angeles County flood of 2005 was the first large flood in Los Angeles County since 1938.

Los Angeles River

Los AngelesLA River[Los Angeles] River
The Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Santa Ana Rivers burst their banks, inundating much of the coastal plain, the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys, and the Inland Empire.
Unpredictable and devastating floods continued to plague it well into the 1930s (the most notable one being the catastrophic 1938 flood that precipitated the recall of then-mayor of Los Angeles Frank L. Shaw), leading to calls for flood control measures.

Flash flood

flash floodsflash floodingflash-flood
Due to its location between the Pacific Ocean and the high San Gabriel Mountains, the Los Angeles Basin is subject to flash floods caused by heavy orographic precipitation from Pacific storms hitting the mountains.
1938: Los Angeles Flood of 1938, California, U.S.: 115 dead

Santa Ana River

Santa Ana
The Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Santa Ana Rivers burst their banks, inundating much of the coastal plain, the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys, and the Inland Empire.
In the Los Angeles flood of 1938, the Santa Ana again burst its banks and flooded Anaheim and Orange in up to 4 ft of water, stripping away thousands of acres of rich topsoil and destroying many of the citrus groves.

Ballona Creek

Ballona
To the west, Venice and other coastal communities were flooded with the overflow of Ballona Creek.
Much of the above-ground section of the creek was lined with concrete as part of the flood-control project undertaken by the United States Army Corps of Engineers following the Los Angeles Flood of 1938.

Tujunga Wash

Big Tujunga CreekLittle Tejunga and Big Tejunga canyonsTujunga Flood Control Channel
The Tujunga Wash reached its peak flow on March 3, with a water flow of an estimated 54000 cuft/s.
In the Los Angeles Flood of 1938 it was tested.

Arroyo Seco (Los Angeles County)

Arroyo SecoArroyo Seco RiverArroyo Seco drainage
As many as 25 buildings were destroyed in the Arroyo Seco canyon, although due to a successful evacuation, no one was killed.
This channel and other similar flood control structures throughout the Los Angeles Basin and along the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains were built following the devastating Los Angeles Flood of 1938.

San Gabriel Dam

San GabrielSan Gabriel Reservoir
The floodwaters poured into the reservoir of the still incomplete San Gabriel Dam, filling it over the night of March 2-3 and overtopping the emergency spillway.
In early 1938, before the dam was finished, Southern California was hit by record floods.

Sepulveda Dam

Sepulveda Basin Recreation AreaAnthony C. Beilenson ParkLake Balboa Park
The Sepulveda Dam was built in 1941 to prevent the Los Angeles River from flooding the lower San Fernando Valley, Burbank and Glendale.
Sepulveda Dam, along with Hansen Dam located in the north San Fernando Valley, was constructed in response to the historic 1938 floods which killed 144 people.

Bridge to Nowhere (San Gabriel Mountains)

Bridge to Nowhere
The southern stub of the highway has been rebuilt as today's East Fork Road, but north of Heaton Flat little remains except for the Bridge to Nowhere, a 120 ft tall arch bridge that was saved due to its height above the floodwaters.
The East Fork Road was still under construction when it was washed out during the great flood of March 1–2, 1938.

Big Tujunga Dam

Big Tujunga
The flooding would have been much worse had a large debris flow not been halted at Big Tujunga Dam; Sam Browne, dam keeper during the 1938 flood, wrote that "Large oak trees several hundred years old rushed down the canyon like kindling... If this dam had never been built, there is no telling what would have happened to Sunland, and the city of Tujunga and the northern end of Glendale."
During the Los Angeles flood of 1938, the dam was able to stop a huge debris flow of boulders and uprooted trees, sparing much of Sunland, Tujunga and Glendale from destruction.

Morris Dam

Morris
The maximum release from San Gabriel was held at 60000 cuft/s, while the downstream Morris Dam further reduced the peak, to about 30000 cuft/s.
The dam was completed prior to the catastrophic Los Angeles Flood of 1938, the most severe flood recorded in Southern California since the Great Flood of 1862.

Santa Fe Dam

Santa Fe ReservoirSanta Fe
Along the San Gabriel River, the Santa Fe Dam and Whittier Narrows Dam had both been proposed prior to 1938, but had little political support until the devastation of the 1938 flood, after which federal funds were made available for both dams.
Construction of the dam began in 1941 under the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), mainly in response to major floods on the river in 1938; however, work stopped in 1943 and did not resume again until 1946 due to the unlucky intervention of a major flood and World War II.

Little Rock Dam

The Little Rock Dam on Little Rock Creek overtopped during the flood due to a damaged spillway siphon that had been plugged by debris; hundreds of people in downstream Palmdale were evacuted.
In 1938, the dam nearly failed as a result of historic flooding, which led to the evacuation of hundreds of people in downstream towns.

List of floods

19752013 flood2015 China floods
*List of floods
The Los Angeles flood of 1938 occurred from late February to early March 1938, causing the Los Angeles River and the Santa Ana River to overflow, causing $40,000,000 worth of damage and causing 115 lives to be lost.

Hansen Dam

Hansen Dam Recreation AreaHanson Dam Recreation Area
Hansen Dam had already begun construction but stood incomplete during the 1938 flood and was unable to prevent the devastating flooding along Tujunga Wash. The dam was completed two years later, in 1940.
The Los Angeles Flood of 1938, which included significant flooding along the Tujunga Wash and at its confluence with the Los Angeles River, increased support to dam and channelize the city's creeks and rivers.

Los Angeles County, California

Los Angeles CountyLos AngelesCounty of Los Angeles
The Los Angeles flood of 1938 was one of the largest floods in the history of Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside Counties in southern California.

Orange County, California

Orange CountyOrangeOrange County, CA
The Los Angeles flood of 1938 was one of the largest floods in the history of Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside Counties in southern California.

California

CAState of CaliforniaCalifornia, USA
The Los Angeles flood of 1938 was one of the largest floods in the history of Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside Counties in southern California.

Los Angeles Basin

a large basingreater Los AngelesL.A. Basin
The flood was caused by two Pacific storms that swept across the Los Angeles Basin in February-March 1938 and generated almost one year's worth of precipitation in just a few days.

San Fernando Valley

San Fernandothe ValleySan Fernando Valley, California
The Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Santa Ana Rivers burst their banks, inundating much of the coastal plain, the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys, and the Inland Empire.

San Gabriel Valley

San GabrielEast San Gabriel ValleyGreater San Gabriel Valley
The Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Santa Ana Rivers burst their banks, inundating much of the coastal plain, the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys, and the Inland Empire.

Inland Empire

Inland Empire, CaliforniaRiverside–San BernardinoSan Bernardino-Riverside Metropolitan Area
The Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Santa Ana Rivers burst their banks, inundating much of the coastal plain, the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys, and the Inland Empire.

100-year flood

100 year flood100-year500-year flood
The flood of 1938 is considered a 50-year flood.