12-Year-Old Twin Sister Among 17 Dead In California Mudslides

Santa Barbara County Fire Search Dog Reilly looks for victims in damaged and destroyed homes in Montecito

Sign up today for a free 30 day free trial of unlimited digital access. Heavy rains were expected, and the loose, fire-charred hillsides above the area would likely wash away, downhill from the Santa Ynez Mountains to the Pacific Ocean with Montecito in between.

The record rains started coming down Monday, soaking northern cities like San Francisco and Sacramento.

Santa Barbara County's fire chief said nearly the entirety of Montecito, except for a small section in the southeast, were under mandatory evacuation orders as of 6 p.m. local time.

Robert Lewin, director of the emergency management office, knew that couldn't be good.

Van Hecke concluded, "Roy was one of my dearest friends and a great mentor to me".

The predicted happened. As the flooding began, emergency officials sent out cellphone alerts.

Barajas is the owner of The Rose, a popular Mexican restaurant in Santa Barbara, and his niece, Angelique Barajas, responded to offers of help from customers by launching a GoFundMe page for him.

The huge wildfire that led to this week's devastating debris flows in Montecito, California, is finally 100 per cent contained.

Miller knew people who stayed, and for some of them, what he called "evacuation fatigue" influenced their decision.

Many questions remain about what could have been done to keep people out of harm's way. Some neighbors did the same, tired too, and wondering if the rains could really be as risky as the historic fire they had just escaped.

"We continue to work down a list of missing people and their addresses and do a much more focused search of that area", Montecito Fire District Deputy Chief Kevin Taylor said during a news briefing Wednesday.

"If you cry wolf, people stop listening", he said.

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We're very saddened by the death of Dr. Mark Montgomery, who was a member of the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital Medical Staff. Dr. Montgomery was a respected orthopedic surgeon who specialized in hand surgery.

"Everybody down below gone, two girls gone", Speirs said.

This series of before and after images illustrate the damage in the Montecito area where some of the worst impacts were felt.

Geologists and forecasters warned that intense rain could trigger deadly mudslides from the scorched areas. Others who were found, or identified among the dead, were crossed off.

The vicious mudflows that raced through the Southern California town of Montecito early Tuesday were swift and ruthless.

Munroe said such an extreme rainfall rate is usually seen once every 200 years.

The 87-year-old man was "located by a search and rescue team in his residence", said Bill Brown, the sheriff of Santa Barbara county. Voluntary orders were issued for 23,000 others as the storm approached. "It's a nightmare", said a resident.

More than 1,200 workers have been deployed in the town of about 9,000 residents for the search and cleanup effort.

"Voluntary evacuation doesn't mean you don't have a problem", he said. "We should have heeded the warning".

The mudslides also injured almost 30 people and destroyed about 100 homes in the Montecito area between the Pacific Ocean and the Los Padres National Forest.

The region's natural beauty and easy access to Los Angeles to the southeast have long attracted the rich and powerful, including television personality Oprah Winfrey, former tennis star Jimmy Connors, talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres and actor Jeff Bridges.

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