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Lauren Coughlin, Editor
10:17 am PST January 17, 2019

Rain is expected to subside by 1 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, but that does not mean that dangerous conditions cannot persist. 

“I think there’s concern that once the rain ends, people will think that the danger ends, but it doesn’t — it will go on for several days,” said David Katz, public information officer and operations leader for Malibu Search and Rescue. 

Malibu Search and Rescue crews were on scene last night, helping to direct traffic when a boulder struck a car on Malibu Canyon Road, injuring the driver. The lone reported injury has not been included in Los Angeles County’s official incident report, which only concerns the Woolsey Fire burn area.

Katz noted that another large boulder fell onto Stunt Road, between Mulholland Highway and Schueren Road in Calabasas, on Thursday morning. Los Angeles County Public Works shared an image of the boulder on social media and urged residents to report road hazards to (800) 675-4357.

Later this morning, a 57-year-old female was transported to a nearby trauma center and was in critical condition after being struck by a falling boulder while hiking on Rambla Pacifico Street in Malibu.  

Katz urged drivers to avoid canyon roads if possible, adding that one-lane canyon roadways such as Malibu Canyon and Topanga Canyon roads present particular difficulties, as drivers have limited room to avoid debris. As of Thursday morning, Malibu Canyon was closed between Piuma Road and Civic Center Way, and Topanga was closed between PCH and Grandview.

“Slow down,” Katz urged. “Be cautious. If you see small rocks in the roadway, just pay attention. There may be rockfall coming.”

Throughout this week’s storms, Malibu Search and Rescue has had assistance from search and rescue teams from Sierra Madre, San Dimas, Santa Clarita, Antelope Valley and Montrose, Katz added.

“We have had people out 24/7 assisting with any rescue activity — which, thankfully, there has not been any — traffic collisions, looter suppression and basically checking areas that are possible areas for mudslides, debris flow and floods,” Katz said.