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Latest on California mudslides – 17 dead, 48 missing

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CNN – At least 48 people are missing after the mudslides that ravaged Santa Barbara County this week, county spokeswoman Susan Klein-Rothschild said.
In addition, 65 homes were totally destroyed and 500 homes have been damaged.

Rescuers searched piles of debris for survivors after tons of mud, trees and boulders swept away homes in Southern California this week, killing 17 people.

Heavy rains sent rivers of mud tumbling down hillsides Tuesday, demolishing homes in the affluent seaside community of Montecito weeks after a massive fire charred the area last month.

In addition to the deaths, at least 17 people are unaccounted for, authorities said Wednesday. As residents await word on their loved ones, Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said the priority is on finding survivors.
“Right now, our assets are focused on determining if anyone is still alive in any of those structures that have been damaged,” Brown told CNN affiliate KCAL. 

Crews have completed a primary search of 75% of the debris field, and more than 500 first responders and 10 dogs are looking for victims in Santa Barbara County.

Rescue workers are using helicopters in a search hampered by blocked roads, and downed trees and power lines.

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