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hope fades for those still buried by montecito mudslide


at least 18 people have died in the montecito mudslides and seven people were still unaccounted for friday, as hope waned that any survivors remained amid muck, boulders and toppled trees.rescuers continued to dig through the tangled wreckage of vehicles and homes, searching for human remains or survivors. santa barbara county sheriff bill brown said crews had found another victim, 87-year-old joseph francis bleckel, in his home in the romero canyon area about 11:30 a.m. friday.bleckel had previously been listed as missing. the number missing has fluctuated widely in the aftermath of heavy rains that pounded the thomas fire burn scar this week and unleashed a ... of mud, boulders and debris that destroyed scores of homes:authorities had said late thursday that roughly 43 people were unacco






essential california: remembering the victims of montecito's mudslides


good morning, and welcome to the essential california newsletter. it is saturday, jan. 13. here’s what you don’t want to miss this weekend:top storiestheir stories: the 17 victims identified in the montecito mudslides were children and retirees, immigrants and longtime residents, united by the mud and debris that crashed through their neighborhood early tuesday. peter fleurat and his partner lalo barajas wanted to ride out the storm together. early tuesday, a wave of mud and debris punched through their wall. the force of the debris flow sucked them both out of the house. barajas survived with cuts, bruises and a sprained neck. fleurat’s body was discovered wednesday. los angeles timescontinued rescue efforts: the death toll rises to 18 as hope fades for the missing. los angeles timesdiffe






oprah winfrey facetimes ellen degeneres for an update on their mudslide-stricken


ellen degeneres’ montecito neighbor oprah winfrey became a special correspondent on “the ellen degeneres show” on wednesday, reporting from the site of their community in central california.degeneres facetimed with winfrey for an episode that aired thursday, and the daytime tv queens discussed the storms that pounded the coastal community this week and the subsequent mudslides that have claimed 17 lives.montecito was still recovering from december’s catastrophic thomas fire, the largest wildfire in the state’s modern history, which left it and the surrounding area vulnerable to devastating mudslides that wiped out homes and buried the 101 freeway.“this room is always so full of positivity and love, and today i really need it,” degeneres told her audience. “so many times over the past 15 ye






today: in montecito, a search for survivors and the fallen


-- the author of a google spreadsheet that listed men in the media industry who have been accused of sexual misconduct has come forward to explain why she created it and how it got beyond her control. (the cut)-- serena williams discusses becoming a mother and the medical emergency she dealt with after giving birth. (vogue)only in californiahave you seen the american market & deli, club raven or thrift town? if so, you must have been in sacramento — or seen the film “lady bird.” though california’s capital has rebranded itself from “city of trees” to “america's farm-to-fork capital,” the golden globe winner and oscar contender is perhaps the best marketing vehicle yet for the 916.if you like this newsletter, please share it with friends. comments or ideas? email us at [email protected]






montecito braced for fire, but mud was a more stealthy, deadly threat


when the thomas fire swept down from the los padres national forest and took aim at this coastal town in december, the looming disaster was impossible to miss.powerful winds picked up, smoke shielded the sun and brought an eerie darkness to the landscape, and towers of flames could be seen in the distance. thousands of residents fled as what would become the largest fire on record in california pushed to the pacific ocean. dozens of homes were lost in the montecito area, but no one died.the mudslides that followed the fire this week were a much more stealthy and ultimately lethal threat. though residents had been warned about heavy rain and potential debris flows, many took the threat far less seriously than the fires. and when the earth started moving, there was nowhere to run.los angeles






search dogs lead hunt for more victims of montecito mudslide


the small white border collie with black spots ran up the side of what used to be a roof of a house at olive mill and hot springs roads with his handler, capt. davis doty of the orange county fire authority. “kneel!” doty yelled at jester. he obeyed.for first responders searching through the mud and wreckage, their furry companions become more than just assistants.“we spend hours every day together, bonding and training,” doty said. “he’s great.”jester is one of eight search-and-rescue dogs scouring the mud and rubble after tuesday’s deadly mudslide.the dogs are a key piece of the rescue effort in a neighborhood of montecito buried by mud. at least 15 bodies have been recovered, and the search is continuing.jester and the seven other dogs were trained by the national disaster search dog fo






classes canceled after reports of shots fired at cal state san bernardino


authorities were investigating reports of shots fired wednesday evening at cal state san bernardino, officials said.classes were canceled for the evening, while students and faculty were advised in a campus alert to shelter in place. no injuries have been reported.when reached by phone, university spokesman joe gutierrez could not confirm that a shooting actually took place.investigators were searching the campus for one or more possible shooters. on twitter, campus officials urged those stuck in classrooms to stay quiet and to block doors and windows with desks and tables.“do not try to leave campus,” the school’s tech support center said on twitter. “do not call police dispatch at this time.”the incident was reported shortly before 6 p.m. near the visual arts building and the west parkin






families frantically search for loved ones missing in montecito mudslide


as the death toll rose to 15 in the montecito mudslide disaster, family members continue to frantically look for loved ones who might still be missing.at the evacuation center at santa barbara city college on monday night, someone had put up a white posterboard, with “message board” scrawled in black.below, in blue, was scrawled “augie & karen johnson,” with a question mark in front of their names. below and next to it were other names, also with question marks, as people searched for loved ones.one name at the top had been crossed out, with “he is ok” scrawled next to it. people left phone numbers on yellow sticky notes, asking others to please call and sometimes telling them they loved them.when a woman came in trying to find her mother, a volunteer checked the message board.“she wouldn’






deadly california slide swept mother, daughter to deaths


montecito, calif. — a young mother asleep with her 3-year-old daughter as her 10-year-old nephew slumbered nearby were among the 18 people killed in a devastating mudslide that brought tragedy and sorrow to the small, wealthy california enclave of montecito.other victims included a 22-year-old woman who died in the arms of her brother as he frantically tried to save her after their father was swept to his death by the fast-moving river of mud.here are their stories and those of others in a community where victims ranged from captains of industry to the people who manicure their lawns.marilyn ramos was asleep in bed with her 3-year-old daughter, kaelly benitez, when the deadly mudslide came crashing through their montecito rental home, carrying both to their deaths.also killed was kaelly's






who they were: the victims of the montecito mudslide


santa barbara county officials have identified 17 people who were killed in the mudslides that swept through montecito on tuesday morning.the oldest victim was 89. four victims were children. the youngest was 3 years old.these are their names and stories.this story will be updated. josie gower family photojosephine gower, 69around 3 a.m. tuesday, gower woke up to the sound of rain thundering on the roof of her home on east valley road. she walked downstairs, where her boyfriend had been keeping an eye on the storm.together, they opened the front door and looked outside. a wall of mud, debris and boulders as big as pickup trucks suddenly struck the house, sweeping the couple out the front door.gower clung to the door frame. her boyfriend reached for her hand. neither could hold on.he was th






who they were: the victims of the montecito mudslide


santa barbara county officials have identified 17 people who were killed in the mudslides that swept through montecito on tuesday morning.the oldest victim was 89. four victims were children. the youngest was 3 years old.these are their names and stories.this story will be updated. josie gower family photojosephine gower, 69around 3 a.m. tuesday, gower woke up to the sound of rain thundering on the roof of her home on east valley road. she walked downstairs, where her boyfriend had been keeping an eye on the storm.together, they opened the front door and looked outside. a wall of mud, debris and boulders as big as pickup trucks suddenly struck the house, sweeping the couple out the front door.gower clung to the door frame. her boyfriend reached for her hand. neither could hold on.he was th






the latest: contamination closes beaches in mudslide area


montecito, calif. — the latest on the california mudslide disaster (all times local):5:45 p.m.fourteen beaches in santa barbara county are closed to swimmers because of contamination from deadly floods in the coastal foothills.county health officials announced thursday that ocean bacterial levels are above standard levels along dozens of miles of coast, from gaviota state beach to carpinteria state beach.until further notice, visitors can walk the sands but they're urged to stay out of the water because storm and mudslide runoff may have brought raw sewage and chemicals to the sea.even wrecked cars have been swept onto beaches.meanwhile, a mandatory evacuation zone was expanded thursday to keep the public out of the way of rescue and relief efforts in mudslide-stricken montecito.county she






families return to mudslide-hit montecito


residents of the hillside community went back to their homes to salvage pets and belongings.at least 17 people were killed in the deluge and rescuers are searching the rubble of more than 100 destroyed homes for survivors






101 freeway, overwhelmed by montecito mudslide, to remain closed indefinitely


as authorities continue to search for those missing in the deadly montecito mudslide disaster, officials announced that u.s. 101 would remain closed indefinitely.the 101, a major north-south artery that carries 100,000 vehicles through the central coast each day, was expected to open monday, but officials said cleaning up an approximately two-mile stretch of the freeway was proving more difficult than imagined.“it’s really an overwhelming situation and we don’t want to give an estimate that isn’t accurate,” caltrans spokesman colin jones said.caltrans crews, aided by private contractors and the army corps of engineers, have been working around the clock on the approximately two-mile stretch of the freeway near montecito. crews have removed most of the vehicles abandoned in the storm, inclu






mudslide brings economic shock to area built on tourism


santa barbara, calif. (ap) — the california mudslide that killed at least 18 people is causing distress miles from where the ... of muck and boulders stopped, as a local economy that thrives on tourism and the lure of sun-soaked beaches was left reeling.on a postcard-perfect afternoon, the santa barbara shellfish company would normally be bustling with lunchtime diners downing fried calamari and lobster tacos, especially on the cusp of a holiday weekend.“we would be smashing right now,” said manager sean johnson, referring to a typical friday crowd at the restaurant on the edge of santa barbara harbor.but with the 101 freeway clogged by mud and debris, cutting off traffic from southern california, “there is hardly anybody in here,” johnson lamented.most read storiesunlimited digital access






101 freeway, overwhelmed by montecito mudslide, to remain closed indefinitely


as authorities continue to search for those missing in the deadly montecito mudslide disaster, officials announced that u.s. 101 would remain closed indefinitely.the 101, a key north-south route in california, was tentatively scheduled to reopen on monday, but cleanup efforts have proved more difficult than expected, santa barbara city fire chief pat mcelroy said on saturday.the freeway “will remain closed until we can deal with water flowing from sheared fire hydrants and until we can ascertain the integrity of that roadway,” mcelroy said.crews are working day and night to clear the road, but as they pump water away, more flows in.capt. cindy pontes of the california highway patrol in santa barbara said she flew over the 101 in a helicopter on friday, and almost a mile of it was under wat






death toll rises to 15 montecito; 100 homes destroyed by mudslides


the death toll from a massive debris flow that buried homes and cars under a ... of mud and boulders rose to 15 in montecito, where local personnel and the u.s. coast guard continued rescue operations wednesday morning.about 300 people remained stuck in their homes in montecito’s romero canyon neighborhood and throughout the debris field, where authorities launched helicopter rescues at daybreak.the mudslides began around 2:30 a.m. tuesday, when intense rains dislodged boulders and caused heavy mudflow along hillsides that were scarred by the sprawling thomas fire late last year. a number of homes were ripped from their foundations, with some pulled more than a half-mile by water and mud before they broke apart.“it looked like a world war i battlefield,” santa barbara county sheriff bill b






in mud-battered montecito, back-to-back disasters 'overwhelming'


many residents evacuated for two weeks during the height of the thomas fire, and authorities blame that for the decision by many to ignore mudslide warnings.        






101 freeway, overwhelmed by montecito mudslide, to remain closed indefinitely –


as authorities continue to search for those missing in the deadly montecito mudslide disaster, officials announced that u.s. 101 would remain closed indefinitely.the 101, a major north-south artery that carries 100,000 vehicles through the central coast each day, was expected to open monday, but officials said cleaning up an approximately two-mile stretch of the freeway was proving more difficult than imagined.advertisement"it's really an overwhelming situation and we don't want to give an estimate that isn't accurate," caltrans spokesman colin jones said.caltrans crews, aided by private contractors and the army corps of engineers, have been working around the clock on the approximately two-mile stretch of the freeway near montecito. crews have removed most of the vehicles abandoned in the






'fast' eddie clarke, guitarist and last surviving member of original motorhead l


“fast” eddie clark, the original lead guitarist of the british heavy metal rock band motorhead and the last surviving member of the power trio’s original lineup, has died while being treated for pneumonia. he was 67.motorhead announced on facebook that clarke had died wednesday in a hospital.clarke joined motorhead soon after it was founded in 1975 by former hawkwind bassist ian "lemmy" kilmister. he was the final survivor of the band's classic lineup: lemmy, clarke and drummer phil "philthy animal" taylor.kilmister and taylor both died in 2015.clarke's time in motorhead produced some of the band's biggest hits, including the ferocious anthem "ace of spades."clarke left motorhead in 1982 and later formed the band fastway.a later motorhead guitarist, phil campbell, said on facebook that cla






mudslide brings economic shock to area built on tourism


santa barbara, calif. — the california mudslide that killed at least 18 people is causing distress miles from where the ... of muck and boulders stopped, as a local economy that thrives on tourism and the lure of sun-soaked beaches was left reeling.on a postcard-perfect afternoon, the santa barbara shellfish company would normally be bustling with lunchtime diners downing fried calamari and lobster tacos, especially on the cusp of a holiday weekend."we would be smashing right now," said manager sean johnson, referring to a typical friday crowd at the restaurant on the edge of santa barbara harbor.but with the 101 freeway clogged by mud and debris, cutting off traffic from southern california, "there is hardly anybody in here," johnson lamented."the big hit," he said, "is people can't get u






many in montecito ignored mudslide warnings — until it was too late


connor mcmanigal was shaken awake by his father. flash floods had forced montecito creek to erupt, sending ... s of muddy water barreling through the hillsides.the two scrambled to escape. but once outside, they were swept up in the deluge and separated. mcmanigal, 23, was whisked nearly a mile away down the road. his 64-year-old father is still missing.the mudslide that slammed into the family's neighborhood, destroying homes and killing at least 13, happened suddenly in the early morning darkness. but it was not without warning.for days, officials advised residents in areas burned by the thomas fire that a coming storm could bring major mudflows. the mcmanigals’ neighborhood was under a voluntary evacuation order.many residents decided to stay. some assumed the threat was overblown just






14 feared dead in mudslide in india’s rain-hit northeast


gauhati, india (ap) — officials in india’s remote northeast say 14 villagers are feared dead following a massive mudslide triggered by monsoon rains.police officer tumme amor said the mudslide quickly buried at least six homes in the village in arunachal pradesh state on tuesday, giving occupants little time to escape.the top elected state official, pema khandu, said five bodies have been recovered so far in the village in papumpare district and relief camps have been set up for people evacuated from mudslide-prone areas.khandu tweeted that the heavy rains have disrupted road transport as well as water supplies and electricity in the state.most read storiesunlimited digital access. $1 for 4 weeks.flooding and landslides in another northeastern state, assam, have killed at least 28 people s






frustrations, tragedy mount for california mudslide town


montecito, calif. — frustrations and dark discoveries mounted for a california town ravaged by a deadly and destructive mudslide.most of the people of montecito, a town usually known for its serenity and luxury, were under orders to stay out of town as gas and power were expected to be shut off saturday for repairs.santa barbara county sheriff bill brown on thursday expanded what was known as the public safety exclusion zone to incorporate most of the town. that meant even those who had stayed behind would have to leave and those who entered the zone would be subject to arrest."it is a little frustrating," said sarah ettman, whose home was undamaged and whose section of town still had gas and electricity. "it's martial law here, basically."however, with most utilities about to be cut off a






frustrations, tragedy mount for california mudslide town


montecito, calif. (ap) — frustrations and dark discoveries mounted for a california town ravaged by a deadly and destructive mudslide.most of the people of montecito, a town usually known for its serenity and luxury, were under orders to stay out of town as gas and power were expected to be shut off saturday for repairs.santa barbara county sheriff bill brown on thursday expanded what was known as the public safety exclusion zone to incorporate most of the town. that meant even those who had stayed behind would have to leave and those who entered the zone would be subject to arrest.“it is a little frustrating,” said sarah ettman, whose home was undamaged and whose section of town still had gas and electricity. “it’s martial law here, basically.”most read storiesunlimited digital access. $1






number of people missing in deadly montecito slide reduced to five, officials sa


the number of people still missing in the wake of a deadly mudslide in montecito now figures at five, officials said friday morning.authorities said late thursday that roughly 43 people were unaccounted for after heavy rains pounded the thomas fire burn scar earlier this week and unleashed a ... of mud, boulders and debris that killed 17 and destroyed scores of homes. the number of missing had grown, officials said, after authorities combed through social media posts and message boards at evacuation shelters.many of those people since have been reported safe, according to chris elms, a spokesman for the california department of forestry and fire protection, but the number of people missing remains fluid.






deadly california slide swept mother, daughter from beds


montecito, calif. — the 18 victims confirmed dead in the california mudslides included a mother asleep with her 3-year-old daughter and the woman's 10-year-old nephew, who was sleeping nearby.in another home, a man had just enough time to shout to his partner to grab onto something and try to save himself before the two were swept away by mud that crashed through the walls of their home. one died and the other survived.the accounts are among the many stories about those who perished and those who managed with inexplicable good fortune to escape the slides in the wealthy enclave of montecito, where resident ranged from captains of industry to people who manicured their lawns.here are their stories.___marilyn ramos was asleep in bed with her 3-year-old daughter, kaelly benitez, when the dead






guatemala mudslide kills 2, leaves 8 more missing


guatemala city (ap) — a mudslide has killed two people in northern guatemala and left eight more missing.national disaster agency spokesman david de leon says a woman and a baby were swept away by the movement of earth, water and rocks.about 25 homes were damaged in the wednesday night slide. photographs provided by the agency showed homes and vehicles buried in the debris.guatemala is in the midst of its rainy season, and the agency said thursday that the ground is saturated in many places.most read storiesunlimited digital access. $1 for 4 weeks.






montecito braced for fire, but mud was a more stealthy, deadly threat


when the thomas fire swept down from the los padres national forest and took aim at this coastal town in december, the looming disaster was impossible to miss.powerful winds picked up, smoke shielded the sun and brought an eerie darkness to the landscape, and towers of flames could be seen in the distance. thousands of residents fled as what would become the largest fire on record in california pushed to the pacific ocean. dozens of homes were lost in the montecito area, but no one died.the mudslides that followed the fire this week were a much more stealthy and ultimately lethal threat. though residents had been warned about heavy rain and potential debris flows, many took the threat far less seriously than the fires. and when the earth started moving, there was nowhere to run.matt hamilt






mudslide-stricken california town is all but emptied out as residents ordered to


most residents of mudslide-ravaged montecito were under orders to clear out friday as the search for victims dragged on and crews labored to repair power, water and gas lines as well as clean up massive debris.even those who didn't lose their homes in the disaster that left at least 18 people dead were told to leave for up to two weeks so they wouldn't interfere with the rescue and recovery operation.it was another frustrating turn for those living in the southern california town that has been subject to repeated evacuation orders in recent weeks, first because of a monster wildfire last month, then because of downpours and mudslides.cia monroe said her family was lucky their home wasn't ruined and they were all healthy and safe, though her daughter lost one of her best friends.but monroe






torrential california mudslide takes lives of elderly, young


montecito, calif. (ap) — the oldest victim swept away in a california mudslide was jim mitchell, who had celebrated his 89th birthday the day before. he died with his wife of more than 50 years, alice.the youngest, 3-year-old kailly benitez, was one of four children killed.as their names and those of 14 other victims were released thursday, crews kept digging through the muck and rubble looking for more people.“at this moment, we are still looking for live victims,” santa barbara fire capt. gary pitney said. but he confessed: “the likelihood is increasing that we’ll be finding bodies, not survivors. you have to start accepting the reality of that.”most read storiesunlimited digital access. $1 for 4 weeks.the mitchells were in love with their home in the seaside enclave of montecito where t






torrential california mudslide takes lives of elderly, young


montecito, calif. — the oldest victim swept away in a california mudslide was jim mitchell, who had celebrated his 89th birthday the day before. he died with his wife of more than 50 years, alice.the youngest, 3-year-old kailly benitez, was one of four children killed.as their names and those of 14 other victims were released thursday, crews kept digging through the muck and rubble looking for more people."at this moment, we are still looking for live victims," santa barbara fire capt. gary pitney said. but he confessed: "the likelihood is increasing that we'll be finding bodies, not survivors. you have to start accepting the reality of that."the mitchells were in love with their home in the seaside enclave of montecito where they moved in 1995, according to their daughter. they also loved






mudslide-stricken california town is all but emptied out as residents ordered to


most residents of mudslide-ravaged montecito were under orders to clear out friday as the search for victims dragged on and crews labored to clean up massive debris and repair power, water and gas lines.even those who didn't lose their homes in the disaster that left at least 18 people dead were told to leave for up to two weeks so they wouldn't interfere with the rescue and recovery operation.it was another frustrating turn for those living in the southern california town that has been subject to repeated evacuation orders in recent weeks, first because of a monster wildfire last month, then because of downpours and mudslides.cia monroe said her family was lucky their home wasn't ruined and they were all healthy and safe, though her daughter lost one of her best friends.but monroe said it






montecito mudslides: the terrifying moment a wave of mud hit


a survivor recalls hearing "the most vicious, violent sounds you've ever heard" as his home was hit.the bbc's james cook reports from montecito, california.






doctor, elderly couple, 6-year-old among mudslide victims


montecito, calif. — a doctor and his daughter who died in the arms of her brother were among the 18 people killed in devastating mudslides that brought tragedy and sorrow to the idyllic coastal community of montecito, california.other victims included a young mother asleep with her 3-year-old daughter as her 10-year-old nephew slumbered nearby, and a woman and her 89-year-old husband of more than 50 years who celebrated his birthday the day before.here are their stories and those of others in a community where victims ranged from captains of industry to the people who manicure their lawns:___sisters sawyer corey, 12, and morgan christine corey, 25, were sleeping when the mud smashed into their home.sawyer was found dead earlier in the week. her sister's body was found saturday morning in m






who they were: the victims of the montecito mudslides


at least 18 people were killed in the massive mudslides in montecito. these are their names and stories.






trump administration backtracks a bit on aca enrollment outreach


republican lawmakers aired sharp concerns about their party's quick push to repeal the affordable care act at a closed-door meeting thursday, according to a recording of the session obtained by the washington post.the recording reveals a gop that appears to be filled with doubts about how to make...