5 killed as mud sweeps away homes in California burn areas

The Latest: Rescues start as mud threatens California areas | Tri-City Herald

"More flash flooding possible Montecito/Carpinteria", a message on Santa Barbara County's website reads.

A woman was pulled out of a debris pile by firefighters, and a 14-year-old girl was saved from a destroyed home in Montecito, Eliason said.

At least six people have died from weather-related incidents, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office said today.

Zaniboni says several homes were swept from their foundations and residents are unaccounted for in neighborhoods below hillsides scarred by recent wildfires.

Crews are working to clear debris slides that have left the freeway at times looking like a river.

The overnight rains forced road closures, including sections of Highway 101, essentially cutting off vehicular traffic between Santa Barbara and Ventura counties northwest of Los Angeles.

But only an estimated 10 to 15 percent of people in a mandatory evacuation area of Santa Barbara County heeded the warning, authorities said.

He says some of those rescued were buried in mud and debris.

A storm expected to bring much-needed rain to California starting Monday could be a double-edged sword for residents living near hillsides made bare by the ferocious flames from the record-setting wildfires last month. Small animals can be evacuated to the Santa Barbara Humane Society located at 5399 Overpass Road.

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Only about a half-inch per hour is enough to start mudslides, said Robbie Monroe of the National Weather Service in Oxnard. Similar amounts were reported across that county.

The communities are beneath the scar left by a wildfire that erupted December 4 and became the largest ever recorded in California.

She initially posted information about the fire, wind gusts, containment, spread and other details about the fire to Facebook.

"Right now we're still in a rescue mode and getting all of the occupants out of there", he said. Evacuations were ordered in those foothill neighborhoods Monday because of mudslide fears.

Photos of vehicles stuck in mud in Los Angeles County and nearby areas dotted Twitter feeds.

Heavy rains were triggering unsafe flooding Tuesday, January 9, 2017, morning in Southern California, with rivers of mud and debris destroying at least three homes and pooling water forcing police to close parts of the coastal US Route 101, .

Large animals can be evacuated to the Earl Warren Showgrounds.

A winter weather advisory is in place for mountain areas, where officials warned motorists to prepare for hard travel conditions, including gusty winds, low visibility and snow-covered roads.

Forecasters issued flash flood warnings and predicted the cold front with powerful winds could bring several inches of rain.

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