In Summary
  • Roads were clogged throughout the region with mudflows shutting down more than 50 kilometers of the 101 Freeway.
  • Emergency responders received numerous unconfirmed missing-person reports.
  • At Los Angeles International Airport, flooding forced the closure of the customs area in Terminal 2.

LOS ANGELES

Mudslides unleashed by a ferocious storm demolished homes in southern California, authorities said Tuesday. Eight people were reported killed.

Santa Barbara County Fire Department (SBCFD) said the bodies were discovered in mud and debris during rescue operations in Montecito, northwest of Los Angeles, according to various reports.

The fire and sheriff's departments weren't immediately available to confirm the deaths, but a further 25 people were reported injured.

The SBCFD said on its Twitter feed it was using dogs to look for victims where multiple homes once stood in Montecito following heavy rain.

The department posted pictures of neighbourhoods submerged in mud and roads rendered impassable by fallen trees.

"Firefighters successfully rescued a 14-yr-old girl after she was trapped for hours inside a destroyed home in Montecito," it added.

Roads were clogged throughout the region with mudflows shutting down more than 50 kilometers of the 101 Freeway and knocking a number of homes from their foundations.

Pounding rain weakened south-facing slopes above Montecito and flooded a creek, sending mud and huge rocks rolling into housing areas.

Emergency responders received numerous unconfirmed missing-person reports, the fire department told the Los Angeles Times.

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