Heavy rain, mudslides leave five dead in S. California

At least five people are dead and thousands evacuated in Southern California on Tuesday after days of heavy rain that triggered mudslides. Santa Barbara County officials confirmed at least five deaths from the storms on Tuesday in that areas hit earlier by devastating wildfires.

More than 27,000 residents in Santa Barbara, Ventura and Los Angeles counties were ordered to evacuate ahead of the storm due to threats from floodwaters and mudslide.

Last month’s devastating wildfires in the region burned away flood-resistant trees and grass.

Firefighters rescued eight people from their homes and the “numbers are expected to go up significantly,” according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s office. At least six homes near the affluent coastal community of Montecito were “wiped away from their foundations” by mudflow and debris, Santa Barbara County fire spokesman Mike Eliason said. The 101 Freeway was shut down in both directions because of flooding and debris flow, spanning an area from Santa Barbara to Ventura, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Source: Kuwait News Agency