'Window closing' as search expands for missing in California mudslide

'Window closing' as search expands for missing in California mudslide

Brown said the recovery effort has been hindered by residents who had stayed behind or tried to check on damage in neighborhoods where homes were leveled and car-size boulders blocked roads and littered properties.

There's been another significant adjustment in the number of people reported missing in the deadly mudslides along the California coast.

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.

She said some missing-person reports are rapidly cleared while others take a long time to resolve.

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.

About 100 homes were destroyed and hundreds of others were severely damaged in the coastal enclave of about 9,000 people northwest of Los Angeles.

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

The victims who died during the storm and mudflows early Tuesday range in age from 3 to 89.

Several homes were swept away before dawn Tuesday when mud and debris roared into neighborhoods in Montecito from hillsides stripped of vegetation during a recent wildfire.

The search for additional possible victims is continuing.


Survivors included a 14-year-old girl miraculously pulled muddy and dazed from a home collapsed by the flows that killed her father. The house was flattened hours earlier by the deadly storm-triggered mudslide that ravaged the Montecito area. The raging water and mud swamped homes, businesses and destroyed vehicles.

Gower's family isn't sure why her house on East Valley Road was not under a mandatory evacuation order. Her company confirms her death in a statement posted Wednesday night on Facebook.

Riskin Partners described its founder as "an exceptional woman" who lived her life with "strength, grace and elegance". Earlier, officials said just eight people were unaccounted for.

The number of confirmed fatalities remains at 17.

On Friday, the estimated number of missing people was down to five, after an estimate of 43 on Thursday.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office made a plea for information on any of the missing residents, while acknowledging that finding anyone alive would be a "miracle". "It's a huge challenge to make time in regards to rescues and searches", Neels said.

The department hesitated to use a cell phone emergency alert system, and they waited until 3:50 a.m. Tuesday to push out the alert, roughly 10 minutes ahead of the worst flooding.

For days, the county had issued repeated warnings via social media, news media and emails about the potential for mudslides. "I think they didn't take it seriously and had no idea the intensity of the storm".

"The pinnacle of Rebecca's life's work and her lasting legacy lies in Riskin Partners and our enduring commitment to selling Montecito real estate", said Dina Landi, managing partner at Riskin Partners. Routes in and out of Santa Barbara have been shut down from the south, and various roadways have been swallowed by the floods. The siblings were carried downhill in the churn of mud, stone and debris, said Mark's brother, David Montgomery, who is a Washington Post reporter.

Related Articles