Aerial footage over Los Angeles seemingly showed massive Tropical Storm Hilary flooding at the city’s Dodger Stadium.
But the video, which appeared to capture the historic stadium near Downtown Los Angeles on an island surrounded by flood water, may have played a convincing trick on the eye.
ForThe Los Angeles Times says that it was actually an optical illusion created by the rainwater glistening on the concrete car parks that surround the stadium.
“Reflection of light,” said Times photographer Robert Gauthier,
The footage was posted by the account dodgeraerial on Instagram and subsequently shared on other platforms.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts told MLB.com that the priority is that people stay safe amid the “unprecedented” weather event.
“This is crazy. I mean, a hurricane in Southern California, that’s very unprecedented, clearly,” he said.
“So I just want to make sure we get ahead of it, people get safe and then it passes us by.”
San Diego National Weather Service meteorologist Elizabeth Adams told the LA Times that “this is actually the first time that tropical storm watches have been issued on the West Coast of the United States”.
The National Weather Service downgraded Hilary from a hurricane to a tropical storm before it made landfall in Mexico over the weekend. It then made its way up into California before being downgraded to a post-tropical cyclone early on Monday morning.
In preparation, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced a state of emergency for large areas of Southern California with flash flood warnings in effect until at least 3am local time on Monday morning.
Forecasters revealed that parts of the state could be hit with five to 10 inches of rain – about as much as the deserts get in a full year.
LA Mayor Karen Bass noted her concern that residents may believe the threat to be over if they manage to avoid the initial damage of the storm, unaware that parts of the storm system may come back to strike again.
“We know that it could get much worse,” Ms Bass said during a Sunday press conference.
“My concern is that people will be a little dismissive and go out when we need people to stay at home, to stay safe,” she added, according to Reuters.
“This is an unprecedented weather event,” she added, according to the LA Times. “Right now again, it is critical that Angelenos stay safe and stay home unless otherwise directed by safety officials. Avoid unnecessary travel. If you do not need to be on the road, please don’t get in your car.
“Make sure your emergency kit and essential devices are on hand and ensure that all of your devices are charged in the event of life-threatening emergency.”
The centre of the storm is set to cross Nevada in rapid fashion on Monday and to dissipate later today, according to the National Weather Service.