Five People Missing After California Mudslides; Thomas Fire Finally Out

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Like many of the search-and-rescue dogs, Decker was found at a shelter after being dropped off by owners unable to care for him.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said residents who had stayed behind or tried to check on damage in neighbourhoods had hindered the recovery effort.

Officials warned those going home that it can be a traumatic experience to come back to damaged or destroyed homes and neighborhoods. On Thursday they believed dozens were unaccounted for, but the number was revised down. "The organization's crisis counselors are supporting a family assistance center at a local church, where families wait to hear about their loved ones".

The mudslide swept through the coastal community of Montecito on Tuesday morning, catching many of the victims entirely off-guard.

Meanwhile, the Thomas fire that denuded Santa Barbara's hillsides - the largest wildfire in California's recorded history - was finally, on Friday, reported 100 percent contained.

"It is heavy. It's wet". The victims range in age from 3 years old to 89 and all were residents of Montecito.

"I walked out back, you know, where we share a fence line and the neighbours out back they're houses are gone".

The mudslide killed at least 17 people and destroyed scores of homes.

The team was requested by authorities in Santa Barbara County earlier Wednesday, the spokeswoman said.

Mudflow and damage from mudslides are pictured in this aerial photo taken from a Santa Barbara County Air Support Unit Fire Copter over Montecito, California January 10, 2018.

Sally Brooks said a "boulder slide" occurred outside her home in nearby Carpinteria in the dead of night.

"Steve Blum, a resident whose home is in one of the most devastated areas of Montecito, told CBS2's Jasmine Viel, "[the county] didn't give any warning to people, which was a mistake".

Reopening the freeway also depends on getting surface streets cleared, along with the drainage channels and debris basins.

Making matters worse, the area recently witnessed a monster wildfire that torched homes and sent clouds of ash and smoke into communities. "You have to start accepting the reality of that".

"It's as exhausting, frustrating and tedious as looking for a needle in a haystack", LAFD Battalion Chief Mark Akahoshi said, while hunched over a topographical map of surrounding terrain studded with ranches and mansions offering panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean. "There will be more", Zaniboni said, adding that some of those brought to safety were buried in mud.

A Los Angeles Fire Department search-and-rescue team tried to sound an optimistic note - hoping for the best, bracing for the worst.

"Seconds later, the whole house was filled with mud". One of the people trying to find them is Captain Sara Rathbun.

As "founder and benefactor of classical Catholic schools", Rohter played "a pivotal role in the lives of countless young Catholic students - students who came to a deeper knowledge and love of Christ because of his vision, commitment, and generosity", added McLean in his statement, posted on the college's website.

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