San Jose was hit by what officials described as the worst flooding in 100 years as the Coyote Creek, which runs through the heart of Silicon Valley, overflowed, inundating neighborhoods and forcing thousands to evacuate.
The evacuations covered a large swath of central San Jose and involved an area where an estimated 14,000 people live. Flooding closed the 101 Freeway — a key route through Silicon Valley — as well as other major roads.
On Tuesday evening, the creek crested to a height of 13.6 feet at a river gauge point in South San Jose — nearly 4 feet above flood stage. The record before then was in 1922, when the creek crested at 12.8 feet, and before that, in 1917, when the creek reached 12.2 feet.
“This is a once-in-a-100-year flood event,” National Weather Service meteorologist Roger Gass said, referring to Coyote Creek’s surging height in South San Jose. “This is a record level.”
Times staff writers Hamilton and Rocha reported from Los Angeles and Lin from San Francisco.