On Tuesday, fire crews rescued five homeless people from the Los Lagos Golf Course in San Jose after a swollen creek flooded the area.
A series of storms in the South Bay, combined with runoff from nearby hills and water spilling from the Anderson Reservoir has overwhelmed Coyote Creek, triggering a swift-moving torrent of water to flow right through the golf course.
San Jose Fire Department Water Rescue Teams Rescue People Stranded on Los Lagos Golf Course
Rescue crews waded through waist deep water to save those stranded at a homeless encampment along the Coyote Creek river, including two who were inside a tent on the third hole tee box. One rescued man said he was surprised by the rising flood waters.
"Everything was surrounded," he said. "It rose so fast."
San Jose Fire Department Capt. Mitch Matlow said city officials have actively warned people to move their encampments away from waterways since the beginning of this season's "wet-winter."
That message was made even more urgent this past week when water started spilling out of the Anderson Reservoir in Morgan Hill, swelling waterways to flood levels.
Water Inundates San Jose Streets, Homes and Cars
"I don't know if the individuals who were trapped today ever heard the message or if they simply chose to disregard it," Matlow said.
Residents living along low-lying areas near the Coyote Creek were also rescued Tuesday and an evacuation order was in effect for the San Jose neighborhood inundated with flood water.
Rescue crews and residents had to be rinsed off to prevent them from being sickened by floodwaters that had traveled through garbage, debris and over sewer lines. The conditions of the people rescued were not immediately clear.
A Calfire helicopter assisted in the search of several people believed to be trapped in trees on the golf course.
The once-drought-stricken region has been saturated by a series of storms and left about half the state under flood, wind and snow advisories.
Several homeless people were rescued Monday from rising flood waters throughout the South Bay.
Dry weather was expected to return Wednesday.