NEWPORT BEACH — When you mix a high tide with the most rain in recent memory, there's bound to be problems.
Newport Beach city crews scrambled from dawn to dusk Wednesday, clearing debris from 20 trees that had been blown down overnight, pumping water from the flooded Balboa Peninsula and nearby islands and restoring power to thousands of residents.
The sixth consecutive day of rain in Orange County was compounded by a 6-and-a-1/2-foot tide that overwhelmed bulkheads on Newport Island and Balboa Island, city officials said. It's the highest tide Newport has seen in five years, said Public Works Director Stephen Badum.
"It's a recipe for trouble" when mixed with the rain, Badum said.
Water on the peninsula and Balboa Island streets was curb-high in places, with crews setting up huge pumps to spill the water back into the bay.
In one spot, muddy conditions caused unstable ground that brought large concrete blocks and metal handrails tumbling onto Bayside Drive and landing a few hundred feet east of the Balboa Island bridge.