How Many Missing? California Struggles to Grasp Scope of Mudslide Disaster

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County officials have already ordered residents in most of the southeastern corner of Montecito, an unincorporated community east of the city of Santa Barbara, to leave their homes for what they said was likely to be one or two weeks to aid the search and recovery efforts. "It continues as a search and rescue mission". Those killed ranged in age from 3 to 89, and all lived in Montecito in Santa Barbara County, northwest of Los Angeles, authorities said.

NeoTract, a maker of devices used in the medical field of urology, has launched a fundraising page asking for financial support for the family of Kim Cantin.

Jennifer Ramos says the Benitez brothers and Victor Benitez's 2-year-old son is in the hospital with injuries. That's where thousands of residents evacuated Monday over fears of destructive mudslides in areas where the state's largest-ever fire raged last month.

Four children are among the dead, including a three-year-old girl who died alongside her mother.

But in the second image, captured Wednesday after the mudslides swept homes off their foundations and killed more than a dozen people, the impacts of both the wildfire and the flooding can clearly be seen. He searched through debris at her now-destroyed home until receiving confirmation of her death.


The correction follows an early Thursday update that raised the number to 48, but the incident management team then issued retraction saying there had been a clerical error.

The number of confirmed fatalities remains at 17.

A video uploaded to Instagram on Wednesday by USA media mogul Oprah Winfrey showed the impact of deadly mudslides on her property in the upscale California community of Montecito.

Santa Barbara County spokeswoman Amber Anderson told reporters some 1,250 emergency workers were at work Friday, slogging through soupy mud and uncertain footing to search for anyone who is trapped.

In updating the missing figure, Brown said that the precise number could fluctuate significantly. Mudslides and flows of debris brought by the region's first winter storm have stranded hundreds of people in Santa Barbara County.


All the new orders, effective at 6 p.m. Thursday, are in areas that were previously under evacuation warnings, and many of those neighborhoods suffered major damage.

The sheriff's office also expanded the evacuation zone in the Montecito area on Thursday, as traffic on the already-clogged roads is hindering efforts by rescue and fix crews to access the devastation.

Helen Murdoch, a resident of Santa Barbara, described the damage done by the mudslides this way: "I would say it's apocalyptic".

The reopening of the 101 Freeway in Montecito remained unclear Saturday as crews continued to clear out mud, water and debris from a portion of the highway.


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