Mudslides Kill 20 In California


Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Tim Pearce Energy Reporter
Font Size:

At least 20 people are dead and four others unaccounted for after mudslides buried parts of Montecito, Calif., and the surrounding area earlier in January, The Sacramento Bee reports.

Weeks of wildfires had burned off most of the vegetation from hills throughout Ventura County. Heavy rains swept the exposed soil off the high ground and carried it along with boulders, trees and debris through residential areas, completely sweeping away at least 73 homes, according to The Las Angeles Times.

The White House released a statement on the disaster Monday.

“The President has been briefed and will continue to monitor the mudslides in California. The President and First Lady extend their deepest sympathies to the families affected, their appreciation for the first responders saving lives, and their prayers for those who remain missing,” the statement said.

A candlelight vigil was held at the Santa Barbara County Courthouse late Sunday evening for the people killed as a result of the mudslides. The event took place hours after authorities announced they were changing from search and rescue to search and recovery as finding survivors buried in the sludge grows increasingly unlikely, The Sacramento Bee reports.

The devastation is on a higher level compared to other natural disasters, according to Santa Barbara County Public Works deputy director Chris Sneddon.

“In wind storms, the power lines are down. In rain, the sewers may clog,” Sneddon told The LA Times. “This is impacting everything: gas, power, sewer, communications, and roads. And we have a high level of damage in a concentrated area.”

Heavy equipment is working to clear tons of mud and debris from roads, highways and structures.

California’s 2017 fire season set record for the destruction and scale of its fire, and may set more after the price tag of every fire is counted. The Thomas Fire, which ranks as California largest fire on record, reached full containment Friday after burning about 440 square miles around Montecito. The blaze started more than a month prior on Dec. 4.


Follow Tim Pearce on Twitter

Freedom of Speech Isn’t Free
The Daily Caller News Foundation is working hard to balance out the biased American media. For as little as $3, you can help us. Make a one-time donation to support the quality, independent journalism of TheDCNF. We’re not dependent on commercial or political support and we do not accept any government funding.

All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact