A massive water main break on Los Angeles’ iconic Sunset Boulevard has caused flooding at the UCLA campus, local officials say.
The main burst on Tuesday afternoon, sending a 30-feet jet of water into the air and opening a hole 10 feet wide in the street.
Local roads were inundated and water poured into underground car parks.
Three motorists had to be rescued from flooded cars.
The broken main dates from 1921 and carries water from reservoirs in the San Fernando Valley to the city of Los Angeles.
People were stranded by rising water shortly before 3:30 p.m. when the water main burst near Sunset Boulevard from Marymount Place to Westwood Plaza, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. It complicated the rush-hour commute for scores of drivers.
The 90-year-old water main was shut off four hours after it ruptured, but not before wasting 8 to 10 million gallons of water, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power officials said.
It took several hours before the flow was halted in the early evening. Pipes had to be closed slowly to avoid further damage, Los Angeles Water and Power spokeswoman Michele Vargas said.
Police discouraged anyone from trying to surf down streets flooded with ankle-deep water, after some people came to the area with boogie boards.
“That is probably one of the most dangerous things you can do,” said Los Angeles Fire Department Captain Jaime Moore.
“For somebody to try and boogie board in this, it’s just going to be an asphalt bath.”
At least five people were rescued from an underground parking structure near the Edwin W. Pauley Pavilion, LAFD spokesman Brian Humphrey said. Four swift-water rescue teams were in two underground parking garages evaluating the structures and checking for any stranded people.
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