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Mudslides threaten California amid heavy rain

Mudslides threaten California amid heavy rain

In Santa Barbara County, however, there was little rain on the wildfire-scarred mountains above Montecito, where crews are still cleaning up after a deluge unleashed devastating debris flows in January. "The worst of the storm has passed over". Twenty-one people were killed and two remain missing.

"The heaviest rain is expected to happened Thursday night through Friday morning, when rainfall rates could reach a half-inch per hour, meeting the very low end of the USGS criteria for mud and debris flows over the Whittier, Thomas, Creek and La Tuna burn areas", the National Weather Service said.

Department of Public Works official Tom Fayram said there would have been problems if not for work that had been done to clear channels of debris from the January storm. In addition, the county is seeking to adhere to a new system of alerts, which encourage residents to evacuate ahead of time, instead of staying put until a storm touches down.

Wenyu Zhang, 42, vanished Thursday as the region was hit by a blizzard packing winds gusting to almost 150 miles per hour (241 kph) over the ridge tops.

A winter storm that could bring more destructive mudslides to our recent burn areas Friday has prompted officials to evacuate portions of Santa Barbara County and issue flash flood watches and warnings for parts of Southern California. The 76-year-old gave her reason for the resolute stance: The building she occupies remained untouched during the January flash floods because "it's on the ocean side of USA 101", preventing mudslides from directly hitting the building. The cause of death was not immediately determined.

Sheriff Bill Brown encouraged residents to "proceed in an orderly fashion" and to have left the area by nightfall on Thursday - the official order tells people to leave by 6 p.m. Travel through the range was discouraged.

As much as 5 feet (1.5 meters) of new snow was possible in the upper elevations of the Sierra around Tahoe, where more than a foot (30 centimeters) fell Thursday.

The snow will help the Sierra snowpack, which is vital to the state's water supply and is only about a quarter of its normal depth for this time of winter.

A rain-soaked Vacaville saw slightly more than 1.5 inches of rain throughout Friday. The storm occasioned heavy snowfalls, strong winds, and heavy rains in different parts of the region. Be careful out there as you drive to your various destinations!

The sun will shine again Sunday and Monday with a high in the mid to upper 50s.



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