California

Many are still missing in the Montecito mudslides. Here’s how to get help

New dramatic footage as mudslide death toll rises

The death toll has risen to 17 after heavy rains forced mud and debris through Montecito, near Santa Barbara, downing power lines, destroying homes and closing Highway 101 indefinitely.
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The death toll has risen to 17 after heavy rains forced mud and debris through Montecito, near Santa Barbara, downing power lines, destroying homes and closing Highway 101 indefinitely.

As first responders continue rescue and recovery efforts in the mudslide- and flood-stricken Santa Barbara County areas of Montecito, Summerland and Carpinteria, some have taken to using social media to spread the word about the missing.

Authorities have not released official word on how many are missing in the area, but Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said at a press conference Tuesday night that they are are looking for at least two dozen people.

“We’re working to determine whether or not those people have been accounted for,” Brown said.

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Mike Eliason, Santa Barbara County Fire Department public information officer, posted a photo on Twitter of a woman named Teresa Drenick standing in her sister’s mud-covered home in Montecito. Her sister is among the missing and hasn’t been heard from since early Tuesday morning.

Santa Barbara County has opened a center to assist people looking for loved ones affected by the storm. The center is located at First Presbyterian Church, 21 E. Constance Ave. in Santa Barbara, and will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday. The phone number for the center is 805-364-1822.

The Red Cross also offers a resource to help find friends and family. You can go to www.redcross.org and click “Get Help” to either report someone as safe or search for family members.

If your loved one has a serious pre-existing health or mental health condition, you can make an emergency information request by calling the local Red Cross chapter for Central California at 805-987-1514 or 1-800-RED-CROSS.

Gabby Ferreira: 805-781-7858, @Its_GabbyF

The death toll has risen to 17 after heavy rains forced mud and debris through Montecito, near Santa Barbara, downing power lines, destroying homes and closing Highway 101 indefinitely.

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Mudslides and debris flows from intense storms that hit Santa Barbara County buried Highway 101 on Tuesday, January 9, 2018. The highway is expected to be closed for days because of the severe damage. This video was taken at the Olive Mill Road ov

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