Rescuers Seek Survivors after California Mudslides Kill 17

And now a massive rescue operation is underway along the southern California coast.

Hundreds of searchers are still hunting for survivors of the flash flooding and mudslides near Santa Barbara, California.

More than 1,200 personnel are now assigned to the incident area, which covers 30 square miles, according to a Cal Fire spokesperson.

Resident Thomas Tige and his family were forced to the roof of their home after opting not to heed a voluntary evacuation advisory issued for their neighborhood, the AP reported. Also, residents left homeless will require shelter. "People are trying to locate missing people, it's basically search and rescue right now".

And rescue teams were still slogging through the mud, hunting for the missing and assessing the damage.

"One of the things that I want to talk about is you know, we've had these bad fires all over California and one of the hardest hit areas is where I live in Montecito". "Literally. Ran for my life". About a block up from Farrell's home, firefighters were helping Devon Crail and his wife, Tiare, retrieve items from his parents' house.

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The Mitchells were in love with their home in the seaside enclave of Montecito where they moved in 1995, according to their daughter. "We will push for every available resource to help Californians recover from these tragedies", Brown said in a statement Thursday. "They took it right to the hospital". "I saw several", McAllister added.

[I] ntense wildfires transform rich soil into a dense, water-repellent surface.

It's hard for her to describe the horrific moments after mudslides tore through their home in the middle of the night.

".86 of an inch in 15 minutes is an unprecedented rainfall on any ground surface, much less a fire-burned watershed", Tom Fayram, a Santa Barbara County official told reporters.

As their names and those of 14 other victims were released Thursday, crews kept digging through the muck and rubble looking for more people.

The Thomas Fire, sparked December 4 in Santa Barbara County, scorched the land and burned away vegetation as it quickly grew to become the largest wildfire in modern California history.

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Jeddah resident Noura Bakharji was among those who patiently waited for her turn, and for a reason. The women however had to enter through designated turnstiles for women and families.

Finally, many Montecito residents ignored the initial warnings.

"(But) no storm brings down everything that is susceptible.

Billy Grokenberger lives in a part of Montecito that was under a voluntary evacuation order.

Many residents made a decision to stay. The couple previously had to evacuate during the fires.

With a shovel in one hand, a man who asked to be identified only as Mikey smoked a cigarette and began removing mud and debris from the intersection of Hot Springs and Sycamore Canyon roads. Officials fear the death toll could rise because firefighters have not yet been able to access some areas in the path of the debris flows.

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She told investigators her prints would likely be on the ammunition because she "occasionally participated in loading magazines". Instead, they demonstrate how authorities continue to seek answers to many questions surrounding Paddock's actions and motive.

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