Death toll from California mudslides climbs to 18

Meanwhile, beaches were closed to swimming, after health officials said mud and runoff from heavy rains contained unknown amounts of sewage and contaminants.

"Most injuries we saw were related to fast-moving debris", Wilson said. "It hardly had any mud on it".

A crew found the body of the 18th victim, Joseph Bleckel, 87, before noon in his home near Romero Canyon in the first death discovered since Wednesday.

"The main target, you would swear, was [their] house", said Weimer, 59, a software engineer.

Those killed were as young as 3 and as old as 84. James Mitchell was the oldest, at 89.

Meanwhile, the Thomas fire that denuded Santa Barbara's hillsides - the largest wildfire in California's recorded history - was finally, on Friday, reported 100 percent contained. People had packed up, left and come back, and some weren't so eager to leave again.

Finally, many Montecito residents ignored the initial warnings.

He said he regretted not forcing his elderly parents to evacuate.

Marin County fire Battalion Chief and team member Graham Groneman said they are glad to use their skills to aid the community. Long term, one option would be more basins to slow down storm runoff and collect debris. As the heaviest rain bands centered over Santa Barbara County, officials urged residents to "shelter in place or move to higher ground" instead of attempting to flee any fast-moving mudflows.

The death toll in the southern California mudslides has risen to 18 as rescue crews continued to search for five missing people. "That is why we have the canines to help us assist in those efforts to either sniff out or guide us to areas potentially that could have other people that need assistance and rescue".

"The house is destroyed, but you know, there's just so many others who are less fortunate".

Josie Gower was one of 17 people killed by the mudslides in southern California since Tuesday.

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The floodwaters can be seen edging down the road as Marco Farrell warns motorists to get out of the way.

"Where do you go when you're a family of four and you don't have a second house?" "My dad used to cut his hair".

Mark Montgomery, 54, was an orthopedic hand surgeon.

Jonathan Benitez, 10, was Ramos' nephew, the Washington Post said.

"He is in an out-of-area hospital being treated".

"Roy's life has been in service to his good, loving and ever-forgiving God", St. Augustine Academy headmaster Michael Van Hecke said in a statement.

Remarkable footage shows Marco Farrell standing outside his Montecito home on Tuesday as a combination of mud, water and debris cascades down the road. The father and daughter had shared a love of taking canoe trips on the wilderness lakes and portages of Canada, David Montgomery said. "We've got all those chickens, which means we've got eggs, and they're ideal".

"That's the last we heard of them", Clay Weimer said. "We basically just had to get out and leave the gates open for the fire trucks and we're right in it ... we're right there".

When Clay and Kelly Weimer couldn't reach the Mitchells, they jumped in their vehicle Tuesday and headed south from the Bay Area.

The oldest victim swept away in a California mudslide was Jim Mitchell, who had celebrated his 89th birthday the day before. "Massive." The "Finding Dory" actress went on to add that she considers the area her "home", and become emotional as she spoke about the devastation. Maybe the dog was OK. "Financially that's a burden".

"I should have evacuated", she said.

"If I'd have known how bad it was, we might have been scared", Abbe Shaw said.

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