Tuesday, 23 January, 2018

California Mudslides Death Toll Rises To 19, Residents Told To Evacuate

California mudslide rescuers 'hoping for a miracle' amid fears death toll could hit 57 Firefighters in Montecito stop work after locating what appears to be a dead body
Sammy Stanley | 14 January, 2018, 14:29

Authorities have released the names of 17 people killed by mudslides in California.

But Monroe said it was stressful after evacuating three times during the wildfire to be packing up a fourth time and looking at spending up to $3,000 a week for a hotel.

Triggered by heavy rains, the massive slides struck before dawn on Tuesday.

Josie Gower, 69, was a Montecito resident who was at home when the mudslide hit the area.

NeoTract, a maker of devices used in the medical field of urology, launched the page Wednesday, asking for financial support for the family of Cantin's mother, Kim, a marketing executive in the health-care field. Earlier in the week, the body of Corey's 12-year-old sister, Sawyer, was also found.

The mudslides were caused when heavy rain dumped half an inch of water on Montecito in five minutes, while nearby Carpinteria received almost an inch in 15 minutes.

"I thought I was dead for a minute", the dazed girl, covered in mud, told firefighters before she was taken away in an ambulance.

For a time during the deadly storm, 81-year-old Paula McDonald was one of the missing, without electricity or cellphone service and unable to reach her children to say she was all right as chaos erupted all around her.

Terrifying video shows the moment a river of mud started coursing down a southern California street - as the death toll in the mudslides has been raised to 17.

Riskin Partners described its founder as a renowned businesswoman whose "knowledge, strength and work ethic were eclipsed only by her unending grace, warmth and kindness".

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"A number of houses were gutted, with rescuers pulling out people trapped under mountains of debris", KCLU's Lance Orozco wrote on Tuesday night.

"It's nearly unimaginable what I saw today", Tom Fayram, deputy public works director for Santa Barbara County, said Wednesday after a helicopter flight over the region.

They revised the figure down from 48 which they said they initially reported due to a clerical error.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said that the rescue teams have worked tirelessly for the missing, adding that 28 people were injured in the disaster in Montecito, north west of Los Angeles, Efe news said.

"I know it sounds like it's a constantly moving number", Brown said.

Santa Barbara County Fire Search Dog Reilly looks for victims in damaged and destroyed homes in Montecito. More information about the boil warning can be found here.

Gater said more than 200,000 emails and other warnings were issued, but the county decided not to use the push alert system to cellphones out of concern that it might not be taken seriously.

He said the zone, which includes areas formerly under voluntary evacuation advisories, would be in effect for one week but that residents should plan for two.

The oldest victim swept away in a California mudslide was Jim Mitchell, who had celebrated his 89th birthday the day before.

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