US News Death toll rises to 17 in Montecito; 100 homes destroyed by mudslides

06:55  11 january  2018
06:55  11 january  2018 Source:   latimes.com

At least 13 dead as heavy rains trigger flooding, mudflows and freeway closures across Southern California

  At least 13 dead as heavy rains trigger flooding, mudflows and freeway closures across Southern California At least eight people were killed Tuesday when a rainstorm sent mud and debris coursing through Montecito neighborhoods and left rescue crews to scramble through clogged roadways and downed trees to search for victims. At least 13 people were killed Tuesday when a rainstorm sent mud and debris coursing through Montecito neighborhoods and left rescue crews to scramble through clogged roadways and downed trees to search for victims.

- The death toll from massive debris flows that buried homes and cars under a torrent of mud and boulders rose to 17 in Montecito , where local personnel and the U.S. Coast Guard Approximately 100 homes were destroyed and 300 were damaged in the mudslides , according to Anderson.

Montecito authorities and homeowners are dealing with devastating damage from Tuesday's mud flows. (KABC).

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(Provided by AP)

Time running out to find survivors of US mudslides

  Time running out to find survivors of US mudslides Rescuers are racing to find 17 people who are still missing after mudslides slammed into wealthy areas of California, destroying an estimated 100 homes. More than 500 firefighters are involved in the search - but conditions are perilous, with "multiple reports of rescuers falling through manholes covered with mud". © Reuters The mudslide destroyed an estimated 100 homes - sweeping some off their foundations Anthony Buzzerio, a Los Angeles County fire chief, said: "The mud is acting like a candy shell on ice cream. It's crusty on top but soft underneath, so we're having to be very careful.

MONTECITO , Calif. -- The death toll in weather-related incidents in Santa Barbara County has risen to 17 early Wednesday, after a storm led to dangerous mudflows in the Thomas Fire burn area. RELATED: Mangled car, destroyed homes show mudslide devastation.

Authorities now say 17 people have died in Southern California mudslides and another 13 are missing. The death toll rose Wednesday as searchers California authorities say 100 single-family homes were destroyed in the flash-floods that struck the coastal enclave of Montecito and adjacent areas of

The death toll from massive debris flows that buried homes and cars under a torrent of mud and boulders rose to 17 in Montecito, where local personnel and the U.S. Coast Guard continued rescue operations Wednesday afternoon.

About 300 people who were stuck in their homes in Montecito's Romero Canyon neighborhood throughout the debris field were rescued Tuesday night. Authorities had said late Tuesday that residents were still stuck and that first responders planned to launch helicopter rescues at daybreak.

a close up of a map © @latimesgraphics

The mudslides began around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday, when intense rains dislodged boulders and caused heavy mudflow along hillsides that were scarred by the sprawling Thomas fire late last year. A number of homes were ripped from their foundations, with some pulled more than half a mile by water and mud before they broke apart.

After California mudslides, more missing people are found as grueling search continues

  After California mudslides, more missing people are found as grueling search continues The search for survivors and victims stretched into a third day after mudslides battered Santa Barbara County.MONTECITO, Calif. — Authorities confronting the overwhelming mudslides that swamped this area reported glimmers of hope Thursday, saying they had located more of those who were missing as grueling search efforts stretched into a third day.

Authorities now say 17 people have died in Southern California mudslides and another 13 are missing. The death toll rose Wednesday as searchers California authorities say 100 single-family homes were destroyed in the flash-floods that struck the coastal enclave of Montecito and adjacent areas of

The Death Toll Has Risen to 17 in Southern California Mudslides . A Santa Barbara County Fire excavator clears boulders from roadways following a mudslide in Montecito , Calif., on Jan. 10, 2018.

"It looked like a World War I battlefield," Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said Tuesday.

a group of people standing next to a tree: Sheriffs deputies carry a body from the debris near Hot Springs Road in Montecito after a major storm hit the burn area Tuesday. © Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times Sheriffs deputies carry a body from the debris near Hot Springs Road in Montecito after a major storm hit the burn area Tuesday.

The death toll rose to 17 after bodies were recovered Wednesday, Brown told reporters at an afternoon news conference.

At least 28 others had been reported injured, and 17 more are missing, officials said. Approximately 100 homes were destroyed and 300 were damaged in the mudslides. Eight commercial properties were also destroyed.

Officials have yet to publicly identify any of those killed in the mudslides. Mike Eliason, public information officer for the Santa Barbara County Fire Department, said there were juveniles among the deceased.

With much of the area still inaccessible, officials have said they fear the number of people killed in the mudslides could rise.

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The death toll in weatherrelated incidents in Santa Barbara County has risen to 15 early Wednesday, after a storm led to dangerous mudflows in the Thomas Fire burn area. (KABC).

(Reuters) - The death toll from devastating mudslides in affluent communities along a stretch of Southern California coastline rose to 17 on Wednesday Winfrey posted videos on Instagram showing her wading through nearly knee-deep mud on her Montecito property and later inspecting the damage.

Southern California was drenched Tuesday, but nowhere did the rainstorm inflict more pain than in Montecito, just weeks after the coastal community dealt with the devastating Thomas fire.

Some 500 firefighters from across the state rushed to help, with crews struggling through clogged roads, waist-deep mud and downed trees throughout the day in search of victims. Dozens of survivors were hoisted to safety in helicopters.

The rain overwhelmed the south-facing slopes above Montecito, flooding the creek and sending mud and boulders into residential neighborhoods, officials said.

On Wednesday morning, the noise of construction crews using bulldozers to move boulders and fallen trees along Sycamore Canyon Road and Hot Springs road echoed down empty streets. Thick mud and downed power lines filled the streets. As the rescue crews tried to open pathways, some residents walked through the mud hoping to aid in the search for missing relatives and friends.

With a shovel in one hand, a man who asked to be identified only as Mikey smoked a cigarette and then started shoveling mud and debris from the intersection.

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Brenda Bottoms, a Montecito resident, described Wednesday the muddy handprints she saw on the sides of neighboring homes , which had been slammed and partly Santa Barbara County fire officials said Wednesday that 100 homes have been destroyed by the mudslides and another 300 damaged.

Authorities now say 17 people have died in Southern California mudslides and another 17 are missing. The death toll rose Wednesday as searchers California authorities say 100 single-family homes were destroyed in the flash-floods that struck the coastal enclave of Montecito and adjacent areas of

(Photos provided by People)

a group of people walking down a dirt road: <p>Rain and mud flow out of an neighborhood under mandatory evacuation in Burbank, California. Mudslides unleashed by a ferocious storm demolished homes in Southern California, authorities said Tuesday. The death toll has reached 15.</p> See the Most Devastating Photos to Come From the Deadly California Mudslides

He had been out since 5 a.m looking for his girlfriend's missing sisters: Morgan and Sawyer Corey. He said their house, located roughly a half mile away in Sycamore Canyon Road, had been swept away.

"They are good people," he said with tears in his eyes. "I'm hoping to find them."

As he waded through deep mud, Montecito resident Ben Ekler said his friend's mother and two children were swept away during Tuesday morning's deluge. The mother and one of the children were found and are recovering at an area hospital, he said.

But the other child is still missing.

At least 7,000 people have been evacuated from the area. As part of ongoing rescue efforts, a "public safety exclusion zone" has been established in Montecito.

Residents in areas west of Sheffield Drive, East Valley Road and Ladera Lane, east of Olive Mill and Hot Springs Road, north of the ocean, and south of the U.S. Forest Service boundary are being asked to shelter in place and not move around the area. The move is designed to ease the task faced by rescue personnel, and those spotted in the area without approval could face arrest, authorities said.

Helicopters and rescue workers from the U.S. Coast Guard and National Guard, as well as firefighters and helicopters from fire departments in Los Angeles, Orange and Ventura counties have all descended on Montecito, Eliason said.

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Authorities now say 17 people have died in Southern California mudslides and another 13 are missing. The death toll rose Wednesday as searchers California authorities say 100 single-family homes were destroyed in the flash-floods that struck the coastal enclave of Montecito and adjacent areas of

The death toll from a series of mudslides in Southern California rose to 17 Wednesday, as hundreds of homes Six homes near Montecito were "wiped away from their foundations" by mudflow and debris Floodwaters destroyed about 100 homes and damaged 300 more in Santa Barbara County.

An airship with night-vision capabilities hovered over the damaged area through the early morning hours. With the rain stopped, Eliason said rescue crews remain hopeful they can soon reach others who are trapped.

a close up of a tree: A man who asked to be identified only as Mikey, sifts through mud and debris looking for his girlfriend's two missing sisters: Morgan Corey and Sawyer Corey. He said their house on Sycamore Canyon Road was swept away. © Al Seib / Los Angeles Times A man who asked to be identified only as Mikey, sifts through mud and debris looking for his girlfriend's two missing sisters: Morgan Corey and Sawyer Corey. He said their house on Sycamore Canyon Road was swept away.

"The weather was favorable. Search and rescue is still very confident that we're still in that window for rescue mode," he said. "We're actively pursuing trying to get in there as quick as we can to get those people to safety."

Rescuing those trapped in Romero Canyon and reaching other homes that were made inaccessible by the mudslides was a priority, he said, because many of those people could be without crucial supplies.

"A majority of Montecito and that whole area is in the Stone Age right now," Eliason said. "There is no water. There is no gas. There is no electricity."

The storm system that hit Southern California beginning Monday dumped more than 5 inches of rain on some parts of Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, and officials had been concerned that sections of the state damaged by last month's wildfires would be susceptible to heavy mudflows. Soil scorched by fire is less able to absorb water.

Mudflows washed out a nearly 30-mile stretch of the 101 Freeway between Santa Barbara and Ventura, and also prompted evacuations in parts of Burbank and Los Angeles on Tuesday. The heavy weather also caused a surge in motor vehicle accidents across the Southland, according to the California Highway Patrol.

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Authorities now say 17 people have died in Southern California mudslides and another 13 are missing. The death toll rose Wednesday as searchers California authorities say 100 single-family homes were destroyed in the flash-floods that struck the coastal enclave of Montecito and adjacent areas of

Authorities now say 17 people have died in Southern California mudslides and another 13 are missing. The death toll rose Wednesday as searchers ___ 12:58 p.m. California authorities say 100 single-family homes were destroyed in the flash-floods that struck the coastal enclave of Montecito and

But Santa Barbara County clearly took the brunt of the damage, where mud, boulders, husks of cars and housing frames were common sights. The section of Montecito that was hit hardest was actually south of the Thomas fire's burn scar, and not subject to mandatory evacuation, according to Eliason.

But a creek that feeds the Pacific Ocean swelled early Tuesday morning, raining boulders and flood waters onto residents as they slept.

The rains were like a starter's gun for many in Montecito and nearby Carpinteria. Peter Lapidus said the sound of droplets pummeling his home forced him out of bed around 4 a.m. Tuesday.

"It was like a bomb went off," he said. "It wasn't raining hard, and then it was like you flipped a switch."

Maude Feil, who was traversing the mud on Olive Mill Road with a walking stick Wednesday morning, said the area looked "like an apocalypse happened" when she first emerged from her home the day before.

As she walked, she made a grim discovery when she spotted what she thought was a mannequin beneath railroad tricks

"It was a woman's body," she said.

Feil had to evacuate during the Thomas fire, and said she was worried survivors who managed to get through the wildfire unscathed may have lost everything they own in Tuesday's debris flow

"I've never been so close to a fire in my whole entire life, then this," she said. "People who didn't lose their house in the fire - they just lost huge things in the mud. It's like a war zone or something."

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