Desionne Franklin could see the wall of water and mud rushing at him in his car's rearview mirror - but there wasn't much he could do about it. Franklin and his girlfriend were inside his Prius in Burbank during Tuesday's storm when a river of mud came rushing down Country Club Drive.
Thankfully though, KTLA reports Franklin "managed to get some traction and maneuver the auto to the bottom of the hill, where several other smashed-up vehicles had come to a rest after similar journeys". Instead, he nervously surveyed the scene as it unfolded outside his window "like a torrent of water, and boulders, and rocks, and mud that was a constant flow".
A member of the Burbank Firefighters Local 778 filmed the footage of the vehicle careening down a street and posted the footage on the group's Instagram page.
Desionne Franklin told local news affiliate KTLA that conditions quickly got worse when they began evacuating.
The video was shot in Burbank and shows the sedan nearly floating in the water.
As the were rafted down the hill, Franklin says his girlfriend was screaming at the top of her lungs throughout the terrifying ride. The auto finally reached the bottom of the hill safely. Rescue officials said numerous missing may simply have been unreachable by family and friends who reported they could not find them.
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Seventeen people from ages three to 89 were confirmed dead, and more than 40 others were unaccounted for. "We have to leave right now'".
The mudslides, touched off by heavy rain, took many homeowners by surprise.
Along the way they saw the damage to other cars.
The pair then drove to the Burbank library to survey the damage to Franklin's auto, which he began leasing about seven months ago to drive for ride-hailing apps such as Lyft and Uber.
"They looked like wadded-up pieces of paper", he said.