Submerged Stories of Dodger Stadium: Exploring the 2023 Unforgettable Flood

Dodger Stadium

A viral aerial video of Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles has left many social media users convinced that the stormy waters from Hurricane Hilary engulfed the ballpark at the end of the week.

Dodger Stadium has turned into an island,” reads a popular post on Twitter, once known as the “Tweet from Above.” The footage shows the stadium surrounded by water. “Dodger Stadium is an island,” another person commented.

Nevertheless, the team asserts that the stadium, perched upon an elevation, never experienced immersion within the water, and the inundation depicted in the recording is purely a visual deception. However, Let’s stop looking at what others are saying and take a closer look at the facts:

Claim: A satellite video depicts Dodger Stadium inundated during Hurricane Hilary.

Facts about the flood at Dodger Stadium

Facts: The team’s spokesperson, Steve Brenner, informed Associated Press that no flooding occurred at the stadium. The team also posted an image of the parking lot on Monday that was dry. Although the Sunday footage initially appears to show a moat-like construction around the building’s exterior, it’s actually a parking lot that was surrounded by rainwater.

The Real Story: The video was originally posted on Sunday morning by the “Los Angeles Dodgers Aerial Photography” account on Instagram and Twitter. “Dodger Stadium this morning,” reads the caption of the post. It was then reshared by others, and the clip’s screen grabs falsely claimed to depict underwater sections.

The Los Angeles Dodgers Aerial Photography account did not respond to comment requests. However, Mark Holtzman, the president of West Coast Aerial Photography based in Los Angeles, suggested that the image could be an optical illusion created through wet concrete. Mark stated that the reflections can create a “murky shape” in the water that appears as standing water. Holtzman further stated that it is similar to when it rains and you see that the light around you is diffused.

Frantz Farid Hani, a digital imagery expert from the University of California, Berkeley, also noted that it’s difficult to discern the difference between the submerged wet surface and the partially submerged surface below the water from long-range satellite views. In an email, Farid said, “I don’t think the video is fake or manipulated; I just think it doesn’t show the stadium surrounded by flooding.”

Although Holtzman, who has flown over the stadium many times and has never seen or heard of it being flooded before, noted that the parking lot isn’t at the level of the playing field, so water can’t accumulate there. He mentioned that, over the course of a few years, he has flown over it enough times. At all different times, be it, dry or wet and it still looks like a wet stadium.

Viewing the footage up close reveals that portions of the parking lot sign, lots 3, 4, 5, and 15, are clearly visible in the footage, and they align with markers in the satellite imagery on Google Maps.

For example, a triangular area at Intersections of Lots I, K, and 7 is also plainly visible in the footage, though it is mostly adorned with short shrubs that would likely have been submerged.

Major League Baseball rearranged three games in Southern California on Sunday due to Hilary’s predicted impact. The Dodgers played a doubleheader on Sunday, meaning there was no game by the team on Sunday.

Brenner, who has flown over the stadium multiple times and has never seen or heard of it flooded before, noted that the parking lot isn’t level, so water can’t accumulate there. “I’ve been flying over it, you know, at all different times and all different, dry and wet, and it looks like a wet stadium,” he said.

As a component of the extensive initiative by the Associated Press (AP) to discredit misinformation, a comprehensive strategy is being enacted, incorporating factual context into deceptive content that propagates across digital platforms, in collaboration with various corporations and institutions.

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