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Landslide Damages Homes, Destroys Swimming Pool in California



Landslide Destroys Home, Damages Swimming Pool in California

A landslide wreaked havoc in Sherman Oaks early Wednesday morning, causing millions in damage and virtually destroying one homeowner’s swimming pool. The catastrophe unfolded at around 3 a.m. following reports from residents in the 3700 block of North Ventura Canyon Avenue, who noticed downed power lines and a large tree fallen into a backyard, as detailed in a press release by the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Upon arrival, firefighters encountered a significant portion of the hillside had shifted downward, endangering at least three homes and inflicting heavy damage on another under construction. Video footage captured by OnScene.TV revealed a gaping crack splitting through the backyard of one residence, with a section of the home visibly tilting to one side.

While no injuries were reported, several individuals were evacuated from at least one home, with firefighters resorting to pumping water out of a swimming pool to alleviate additional strain on the hillside. Unfortunately, part of the pool and home ultimately collapsed down a 30-foot cliff destroying another residence that was still under construction.

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Responding to the crisis, the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety initially deemed one home unsafe, red-tagging the structure. However, their assessment later extended to two homes deemed unsafe and a third severely damaged, marked with a yellow tag. Ongoing drone surveys by firefighters aim to assess the extent of the damage and potential risks.

At present, the exact cause of the landslide remains undetermined, according to LAFD spokesperson Nicholas Prange. Requests for comment from the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety went unanswered.

Authorities seized the opportunity to remind residents of the necessity for year-round emergency preparedness, emphasizing the looming threats posed by wildfires and heavy rainstorms capable of triggering landslides.

The unfortunate incident follows March’s heavy precipitation in Southern California, with Sherman Oaks experiencing 1.95 inches of rainfall over March 6th and 7th, as reported by the National Weather Service.

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Pool News coverage brought to you by Pool Magazine's own Marcus Packer. Marcus Packer is a 20 year pool industry veteran pool builder and pool service technician. In addition to being a swimming pool professional, Marcus has been a writer and long time contributor for Newsweek Magazine's home improvement section and more recently for Florida Travel + Life. Have a story idea or tip you'd like to share with Pool Magazine? Email [email protected] your story idea.

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French Diver Makes Splash After Flop At Opening of Olympic Pool



French Diver Makes Splash After Flop At Opening of Olympic Pool

French Olympic diver, Alexis Jandard, created a memorable moment at the grand opening of Paris’s new Olympic pool, though not quite in the manner he had envisioned.

A startling video captured during the inauguration of the state-of-the-art Paris Aquatics Center on Thursday showcased the 26-year-old Olympian’s unfortunate landing on his right foot while gearing up to dive alongside two fellow athletes. Adorned in a Speedo reflecting the hues of the French flag, Jandard’s discomforting descent saw him landing on his back, ricocheting off the nearly 10-foot-high dive board, and somersaulting into the pool in a rather ungraceful manner.

The incident unfolded in front of a sizable crowd of onlookers, including French President Emmanuel Macron and various dignitaries. Jandard later displayed his scraped back on his Instagram account, maintaining a light-hearted approach to his embarrassing mishap by quipping, “For your information, my back is fine, but my ego…”

Sharing a photo of his reddened back, courtesy of the encounter with the diving board, on Instagram Stories, Jandard assured followers of his well-being. Speaking to RMC Sport, he recounted the unexpected turn of events, stating, “I’m fine. I didn’t hurt myself; unfortunately, these things happen. It happened at a time when I wasn’t expecting it at all.”

Alexis Jandard injured his back at the inauguration of the new Olympic Pool in Paris. Photo Credit: @alexis_jandard - Instagram
Photo Credit: @alexis_jandard – Instagram

Reflecting on the incident, Jandard humorously noted, “I’ve broken boards before, but the board had never broken me before. Now it has.” Despite the hiccup, he maintained an optimistic outlook, remarking, “I would have preferred this ceremony to have gone well from A to Z. There was that little hitch. If it made people smile a little, so much the better.”

Explaining the mishap, Jandard clarified that his leg gave way upon landing but denied any slippage, emphasizing, “It’s a non-slip [board], and what’s more, the board was new, beautiful, and I think there’s still [some of] my back on the board there.”

With a silver and bronze under his belt at the 2022 and 2023 World Aquatics Championships, respectively, Jandard took the incident in stride, admitting, “It’s a shame, but it’s funny. When you take a step back, it’s funny.”

Looking ahead to the 2024 Paris Games this summer, where he is set to compete, Jandard acknowledged the inevitability of such occurrences in his sport, jesting, “These things happen,” while playfully lamenting, “It had to happen in front of the president and the whole of France. I think we chose the right moment.”

Despite being inundated with supportive messages and playful jabs, Jandard maintained a good-natured stance, urging his followers on Instagram, “Enjoy yourselves, make fun of me. I seriously deserve it!”

4.9/5 - (11 votes)

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Earthquake in Taiwan Causes Waterfall From Rooftop Pool

A massive earthquake in Taiwan transforms a rooftop pool into a waterfall. View viral footage.



Earthquake in Taiwan Causes Waterfall From Rooftop Pool

In a harrowing turn of events, Taiwan was struck by a powerful 7.4 magnitude earthquake, leaving devastation in its wake. The quake, the strongest to hit the island in 25 years, shook the east coast of Taiwan, particularly affecting the city of Hualien and its surrounding areas. With a depth of 34.8 kilometers, the epicenter of the earthquake was located 18 kilometers south of Hualien, according to the US Geological Survey.

As rescue efforts are underway to free those trapped under rubble and debris, the toll of the disaster continues to rise. At least nine individuals have lost their lives, while over 900 others have sustained injuries. The aftermath of the earthquake has left over 100 buildings damaged, with reports of landslides and collapsed structures adding to the chaos.

The force of the quake was so immense that it caused a surreal sight—a rooftop swimming pool overflowing and cascading down the side of a building, creating an impromptu waterfall. Footage captured during the earthquake also shows the sheer force as a man inside a pool struggles to maintain balance, the water swaying violently from side to side.

Dramatic footage of the earthquake shows a rooftop pool transformed into a waterfall.

The region of Hualien County, with a population of approximately 300,000, faces immense challenges in assessing the full extent of the damage. Many inhabitants reside in remote coastal or mountain communities, making it difficult for rescue teams to reach them promptly. The precarious situation is exacerbated by the expectation of aftershocks, with 29 aftershocks greater than a magnitude of 4.0 already recorded near the epicenter.

Compounding the crisis are reports of miners trapped in two mines in Hualien, adding urgency to the rescue operations. Furthermore, over 91,000 households are grappling with power cuts, amplifying the difficulties faced by residents in the aftermath of the disaster.

Despite the widespread destruction, medical facilities in Taiwan’s capital, Taipei City, are functioning, albeit damaged. The Municipal Government has confirmed that hospitals are operating normally, providing critical care to the injured.

The international community has responded swiftly to the catastrophe, with the Biden administration monitoring the situation closely and expressing readiness to offer assistance. In the face of adversity, Taiwan is rallying its resources and resilience, demonstrating solidarity and resolve in confronting this natural disaster.

As the dust settles and the extent of the damage becomes clearer, questions arise about the effectiveness of early warning detection systems in mitigating the impact of natural disasters. Despite Taiwan’s investment in advanced seismic technology, including early warning systems designed to provide crucial seconds of alert before an earthquake strikes, many residents were caught off guard by the sudden and violent tremors. Reports indicate that the early warning detection system, while operational, did not reach a significant portion of the population in time to take preventive action

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Patent Pending Apple Watch SOS Feature Could Prevent Drownings



Patent Pending Apple Watch SOS Feature Could Prevent Drownings

A forthcoming feature potentially destined for the Apple Watch, as detailed in a recent patent application, could serve as a lifesaver for swimmers at risk of drowning.

Outlined in the patent is a capability for the Watch to identify “irregular behavior” and automatically trigger a distress call for assistance.

Apple underscores the alarming statistics surrounding drowning, particularly its prevalence among children, as a leading cause of accidental fatalities.

In the United States alone, drowning claims the lives of over 3,500 individuals annually, ranking as the fifth most common form of accidental death. Tragically, a significant portion of these victims are children.

Emphasizing the critical importance of swift intervention during water emergencies, Apple highlights the dire consequences of prolonged submersion without resuscitation, which can result in brain damage and ultimately, drowning.

A Growing Need For Cost-Effective Wearable Solutions

While acknowledging existing underwater camera systems in some swimming pools aimed at detecting distressed swimmers and alerting lifeguards, Apple notes their costliness and unreliability.

Consequently, there’s a pressing need for a simpler, more cost-effective drowning prevention solution suitable for all types of water bodies, including public and private pools, as well as natural settings like lakes and ponds where installing underwater cameras is impractical.

The patent proposes leveraging wearable devices such as the Apple Watch for broader applicability, increased reliability, and the ability to detect various types of emergencies.

Alerting When Swimmers Are In Distress

For instance, if the Watch detects a wearer who is not proficient in swimming entering deeper water, it can promptly dispatch an alert instead of waiting for signs of distress.

These alerts can be transmitted to nearby devices, including those of friends and family, and seamlessly integrate with existing drowning detection and alarm systems to ensure lifeguards are promptly notified.

Apple Watches already boast capabilities to detect and respond to falls, vehicle accidents, and cardiac irregularities. Heartwarming testimonials featured in Apple’s “Dear Apple” video series show individuals whose lives were saved by these functionalities.

As with many patents from Apple, it’s important to note that not all concepts may materialize into actual products. Nonetheless, this innovation stands as a promising addition for potential integration into future watchOS updates.

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