More than 40 People Remain Missing after the Mudslides in California

Cars are seen stranded on the 101 Freeway near Summerland on Jan. 9 2018

Rescue workers aided by heavy equipment began the long, slow slog on Friday of clearing a massive mudslide from this coastal town as they faced the breadth of the death and destruction.

The number provided by county officials earlier in the day was eight missing.

This was the first notable rain event during the region's rainy season, and the first time heavy precipitation fell since a series of large wildfires scorched hundreds of square miles.

Let's all hope he's right, and the search dogs whose lives were once saved continue to pay it forward by saving more victims. Crews have removed most of the vehicles abandoned in the storm, including a number of tractor-trailers, but a significant amount of debris and mud remains. The stretch of the 101 between Carpinteria and Santa Barbara was reopened midday Thursday.

Evacuee Hannah Troy has spent three days at the Red Cross shelter in nearby Santa Barbara.

A GoFundMe page has been created to support Lauren and her family.

"Financially that's a burden", she said.

I work in LA, but I consider Montecito my home.

He was two blocks from home when he heard a rumble that he realized was the mudslide he feared. "I saw several", McAllister added.

For others, the grim reality was just beginning as workmen dug through the debris. "It just exhausts the crews out there", Sacramento Fire Department Captain Pat Costamagna said in a social media video from the governor's emergency management office. "You never really know". The victims who died during the storm and mudflows early Tuesday range in age from 3 to 89.

The husbands of both women and the 2-year-old son of Fabiola Benitez, were hospitalized with injuries, Ramos said.

Corey's 12-year-old sister, Sawyer Corey, previously was found dead.


Tanker trucks sucked muddy water from flooded sections of US 101, the only direct major artery between Los Angeles and the Santa Barbara region and an important route for many people who work in the Santa Barbara region but live down the coast in Ventura County.

According to Santa Barbara City Fire Public Information Officer Amber Anderson, the number of missing persons will likely continue to fluctuate. There are still four people reported missing.

The damage above Montecito isn't absolute.

A wall of water carrying uprooted trees and boulders flowed like a river through the residential street.

The searches themselves are slow, largely because the mud is so hard to walk through and hides myriad dangers.

Despite his home filled with water and mud, Farrell and his family found solace in the home's hallway.

"We would have evacuated", she said.

Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres also share a fence line there. "There's nearly always more" that could come down, Jibson said. At least two unrecognizably mangled cars were carried like driftwood all the way to the beach, where they were partly covered in seaweed. "What would we have done with the animals?"

Brown urged anyone in mandatory evacuation areas to leave immediately. Then the mudslide hit.

"We'll just be here", Abbe Shaw said as she walked back to their house.

"We walked away very confident in the way the fire was put to bed", said Marin County Fire Battalion Chief Bret McTigue, who's leading a 30-member team that arrived in Montecito Thursday morning. "I thought I was dead there for a minute", she told rescuers.

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