MONTECITO

Photos: Deadly mudslides in southern California

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.
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.
Image: Daniel Dreifuss via AP
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At least 13 people have died after mudslides in Southern California, the Los Angeles Times reports. After last month’s wildfires cleared stabilizing vegetation from hillsides, strong rains turned the remainder into devastating mud flows yesterday.

Mudslides particularly affected wealthy areas such as Montecito and Santa Barbara, where many celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey, have homes.

 

Locals described the sound of the approaching mudslide to the AP:

Thomas Tighe said he stepped outside his Montecito home in the middle of the night and heard “a deep rumbling, an ominous sound I knew was … boulders moving as the mud was rising.”

Military vehicles arrive to assist evacuation operations at an area damaged by mudslides in Montecito, Calif. on Jan. 9.
Military vehicles arrive to assist evacuation operations at an area damaged by mudslides in Montecito, Calif. on Jan. 9.
Image: Santa Barbara County Fire Department via Reuters
The Montecito Inn sits in flooded waters and debris after a mudslide in Montecito.
The Montecito Inn sits in flooded waters and debris after a mudslide in Montecito.
Image: Kenneth Song/Santa Barbara News-Press via Reuters
Emergency personnel evacuate local residents and their dogs through flooded waters after a mudslide in Montecito.
Emergency personnel evacuate local residents and their dogs through flooded waters after a mudslide in Montecito.
Image: Kenneth Song/Santa Barbara News-Press via Reuters
A search dog looks for victims in damaged homes after a mudslide in Montecito, Calif. on Jan 9.
A search dog looks for victims in damaged homes after a mudslide in Montecito, Calif. on Jan 9.
Image: e Department/Handout via Reuters
A car and debris smashed against a tree along Hot Springs Road in Montecito, Calif.
A car and debris smashed against a tree along Hot Springs Road in Montecito, Calif.
Image: Daniel Dreifuss via AP
U.S. Highway 101 at the Olive Mill Road overpass is flooded with runoff water from Montecito Creek in Montecito, Calif.
U.S. Highway 101 at the Olive Mill Road overpass is flooded with runoff water from Montecito Creek in Montecito, Calif.
Image: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department via AP
A large boulder sits in the middle of Bella Vista Drive in Montecito, Calif.
A large boulder sits in the middle of Bella Vista Drive in Montecito, Calif.
Image: AP Photo/Michael Owen Baker
Residents gather at a road blockage on East Valley Road in Montecito, Calif.
Residents gather at a road blockage on East Valley Road in Montecito, Calif.
Image: AP Photo/Michael Owen Baker
This photo provided by Ventura County Sheriff’s Office shows an arial view of Montecito, Calif., with mudflow and debris due to heavy rains.
This photo provided by Ventura County Sheriff’s Office shows an arial view of Montecito, Calif., with mudflow and debris due to heavy rains.
Image: Ventura County Sheriff's Office via AP
In this photo provided by Santa Barbara County Fire Department, the main line of the Union Pacific Railroad through Montecito, Calif. is blocked with mudflow and debris.
In this photo provided by Santa Barbara County Fire Department, the main line of the Union Pacific Railroad through Montecito, Calif. is blocked with mudflow and debris.
Image: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department via AP
A structure is smashed against a tree along Hot Springs Road in Montecito, Calif.
A structure is smashed against a tree along Hot Springs Road in Montecito, Calif.
Image: Daniel Dreifuss via AP
In this photo provided by Santa Barbara County Fire Department,  firefighters respond to mud and debris flow due to heavy rain in Montecito. Calif.
In this photo provided by Santa Barbara County Fire Department, firefighters respond to mud and debris flow due to heavy rain in Montecito. Calif.
Image: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department via AP