U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
 
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News.bytesNews.bytes Extra, issue 342


Youth help clean up after Eastern Sierra floods and mudslides

Wildfires last year burned steep and rocky hillsides of the Eastern Sierra high above the Owens Valley -- then a sudden downpour two weeks ago poured enough rain onto the area to trigger a mass mudflow and flood event that rumbled down to residences and the highway on the valley floor.  Suddenly, many Eastern Sierra residents in the Oak Creek area of Independence, California found themselves without homes as flash floods and mudslides swept the area.  Volkswagen-sized boulders ripped into people's homes along with up to four feet of mud and debris that filled up many of the area residences.

Among those helping homeowners dig our mud from in and around their homes is a team from the Eastern Sierra Youth Conservation Corps, in their first year working with Becky Hutto of BLM-California’s Bishop Field Office. (text continues below)

Ronnie Stockman digs mud out of the living room area of a resident's house...
ESYCC member Ronnie Stockman digs out the living room area of a resident's house.

... as Kayla Nauman and Joe Blumberg work in the bedroom area:
Kayla Nauman and Joe Blumberg work in the bedroom area

Roy Orihuela in another bedroom, where the entire wall was washed away by the waters:
Roy Orihuela in another bedroom, where the entire wall was washed away by the waters.

 

 Eastern Sierra Youth Conservation Corps members take a break for a group photo: (from left) Whitney Pate, Ronnie Stockman, Roy Orihuela, Equal Kennedy, Bonnie Brown, Joe Blumberg and Kayla Nauman.
The workers pause for a group photo

The ESYCC provides youth with opportunities for success with job skills training, developing work ethic, a sense of community responsibility, and leadership skills. There is an emphasis on conservation and service projects that benefit the Eastern Sierra. The relief assistance in Independence was a good fit for their program. They were scheduled to work on various projects with the BLM field office for six weeks this summer – when this emergency arose. Next season the office hopes to schedule them for eight weeks of project work. They are funded by the Inyo Mono Advocates for Community Action, Inc. (IMACA).

- B. Hutto, J. Pollini -- BLM-California Bishop Field Office, 7/30/08



BLM-California News.bytes, issue 342


 
Last updated: 07-31-2008