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.
Flash floods swept down hillsides, unleashing torrents of mud, and uprooted trees and boulders into the valley below.
"And there are families missing, there are people who are missing family members ... it's catastrophic". "There are mothers, fathers, grandfathers, siblings and the list goes on and on". In the video, mud and water can be seen filling the bottom floor of the house Mr Farrell shares with his elderly parents, Gabrielle and Jeff. I mean, it was apocalyptic. "I don't know how I got lulled".
Winfrey said that because her house is located on top of a knoll, she feels safe. But when it hit his back fence, the flow split in two.
There is now no estimated reopening date, officials said.
The fires burned most vegetation, leaving flawless conditions for the latest tragedy to unfold. With no vegetation left to absorb the rain, the slides came quickly amid a torrential downpour.
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Hundreds of rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of the mudslides that slammed this wealthy coastal town.
"Auto and pedestrian traffic in the exclusionary zone has reached a point that it is seriously impacting the ability of search and rescue, public works, other first responders and fix crews to clear roadways and to engage in search and rescue, fix and damage-assessment operations", he said.
Mandatory evacuation orders were expanded Thursday evening to Montecito areas below Highway 192/Foothill road, a move Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said is meant to increase access for rescue and fix crews working in the area.
Kailly Benitez, 3, was the youngest of four children whose names the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office released Thursday. One of the victims who lost their lives in the disaster was David Cantin, the father of 14-year-old Lauren Cantin who was rescued after a six-hour effort by first responders on Tuesday.
As California is at the beginning of its rainy season, O'Dea says he's anxious about how people will make it through.
"It's just waiting and not knowing, and the more I haven't heard from them - we have to find them", Kelly Weimer, whose elderly parents remain missing, told the Associated Press. "So many times over the past 15 years, people have come up to me and [said] to me that when they're going through a tough time, this show helps them through it".