Mission Beach resident looks for cat feared lost in flooding

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SAN DIEGO -- A Mission Beach resident spent his Tuesday evening looking for his two cats that ran away from home when a water main burst, creating a giant geyser outside his home.

One of the felines was seen running away Monday evening when water and debris began raining down on Paul Silva's residence, but neither Cassius nor Rocky had been seen since.

It took more than two hours for the city to finally shut off the water, but by then, Silva's house had sustained a lot of water damage and much of its foundation has been washed away.

On Wednesday morning, a structural engineer is expected to inspect the house and decide if it's salvageable.

"If they would've taken care of it from the get-go, we wouldn't be in this situation and we wouldn't be out here looking for my cats. We wouldn't be out here wondering where I'm going to sleep," said Silva.

The city has maintained that its workers did everything they could to turn off the water but finding the right shut off valve turned out to be difficult.

"There was so much water from the water main, it was showering down and pooling in the area before they could locate the valve closest to the break," said Arian Collins, a spokesperson for the city.

Collins said Silva or anyone else who sustained property damage as a result of the flooding can file a claim with the city.

Late Tuesday night, Silva was able to locate one of his cats, Rocky, near the house. But Cassius was still missing.

"These cats are pretty important to us. They're a pretty big part of our lives," said Silva.