San Diego

Apartments Flooded After Sleepy Driver Shears Hydrant: Police

Residents of a University City apartment complex were forced out of their homes after a car sheared a fire hydrant sending a flood of water into their complex early Monday.

The San Diego Police Department said a driver of a Hyundai Santa Fe fell asleep behind the wheel and crashed into a hydrant near the intersection of Genesee Avenue and Regents Road after 1:30 a.m.

Hundreds of gallons of water from the sheared hydrant streamed down a set of stairs and into six units on the lower level of a nearby apartment complex causing a pool several inches deep.

Firefighters had to use a ladder truck to help residents out through their rear balconies, which overlooks a canyon. No injuries were reported.

Hours later, crews with Accenture Carpet Company were pulling out carpet and using vacuums to siphon water from the units. 

Once water is drained, the units will be tested for mold, which would determine when residents could be let back into their apartments. 

At least a dozen people would need to find temporary living with assistance from the Red Cross, police said. 

Resident Alec Gonzalez said he was told they would have to be out of their units for a few days but it could be up to a week. He planned to stay at a hotel in the meantime. 

Gonzalez said he was mostly concerned about the damage to his furniture. 

"The TV stand, the couch, that’s the main things. The TV, but it’s not that bad. The TV’s fine, so that’s good," he said with a laugh.

Police said the driver would not be charged for the crash because he remained at the scene. The driver was not hurt. 

No other information was available.

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