rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » News » California mudslides leave 17 dead; another 17 still missing

California mudslides leave 17 dead; another 17 still missing

January 11, 2018 15:00 IST

Seventeen people have died in Southern California mudslides and another 17 are missing.

IMAGE: Family members inspect the inside of a home covered in mud following the mudslides in Montecito, California, US. Photograph: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department/Reuters

The death toll climbed to 17 on Wednesday as emergency workers pulled bodies from a river of knee-deep mud and continued to search grimy debris and ruins for the more than a dozen people still missing.

Officials say the deluge destroyed 100 houses and damaged 300 others after debris spread across a wide swath of Montecito -- a wealthy enclave of about 9,000 people northwest of Los Angeles that is home to a number of high profile celebrities.

 

The debris was able to rush down on to the community because the hillside vegetation which would have ordinarily impeded it was stripped during the catastrophic wildfires last month.

IMAGE: A search dog looks for victims in damaged homes after a mudslide in Montecito, California, US. Photograph: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department/Reuters

Residents have now started returning home to assess the damage to their properties.

Along Hot Springs Road, where at least two homes were carried off their foundations, bulldozers cleared muck and debris from areas already searched.

IMAGE: Emergency personnel search through debris and mud flow after the mudslide. Officials say the deluge destroyed 100 houses and damaged 300 others after debris spread across a wide swath of Montecito. Photograph: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department/Reuters

Utility crews have begun the laborious task of repairing downed power lines and snapped telephone poles.

IMAGE: Abadoned cars stuck in flooded water on the freeway after the mudslide. Photograph: Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department/Reuters

Some 500 firefighters and other rescue workers continue the hard task of searching through the debris for survivors.

 

IMAGE: Some 500 firefighters and other rescue workers continue the hard task of searching through the debris for survivors. Photograph: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
AGENCIES