Death toll rises to 13 in deadly mudslides in Southern California

Residents fill sandbags in advance of a powerful storm expected to hit Santa Barbara County on Monday night and Tuesday. Mandatory evacuations have been ordered effective at noon Monday for areas below the Thomas and Whittier burn areas

Hyatt and other residents are recalling the chaos that ensued as Tuesday's deadly mudslides and flooding devastated parts of Southern California.

There were mixed reports about how many were still missing, with the number jumping from 17 to 48, according to Associated Press. "We need people out, because they're really hampering our efforts for not only the rescue, but for the cleanup", said Santa Barbara County Fire Department spokeswoman Amber Anderson in a Friday phone interview.

He added several dozen homes were destroyed or severely damaged, and that there are probably many more in similar condition in areas still inaccessible.

The host was evacuated from her home in Santa Barbara County.

"If you tell everyone to get out, everyone get out, the next time people won't listen", emergency manager Jeff Gater told the newspaper.

"Right now our assets are focused on determining if anyone is still alive in any of those structures that have been damaged", Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said.

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Families and friends of the people who died in the mudslides began to identify those lost.

The immediate areas where people were killed are under mandatory evacuation, and officials increased the size of the evacuation zone Thursday.

"This is a constantly changing list", Brown said during a news conference.

A member of the Long Beach Search and Rescue team looks for survivors in a auto in Montecito.

Just weeks after raging wildfires forced them to leave their homes, residents of the area to the east of Santa Barbara were being urged to leave after a deluge of mud, ash and boulders were unleashed by a ferocious storm.

Up to 500 emergency responders and law enforcement officials are now searching the area for survivors using thermal imaging equipment, helicopters and sniffer dogs. Evacuations were ordered for about 700 residences. He and his parents put belongings in three cars in case they chose to leave before the storm. Together with the loss of vegetation, this leads to an increased risk of mudslides and floods.

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On the morning of the storm, Grokenberger watched as 2 to 3 feet of water streamed down the street.

"There are four juveniles on the list", Brown said. Sixty-five homes confirmed destroyed and more than 400 damaged.

"I don't know how the baby survived", Mr Berkeley told the Santa Barbara Independent newspaper.

The mudslides struck the communities hit hard by the Thomas fire in December, the largest wildfire in California's modern history.

The death toll climbed as emergency workers pulled bodies from the river of knee-deep debris which descended on the community of Montecito and the surrounding Romero Canyon area after a torrent of rain earlier in the week.

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