California storm - live: Search for swept away boy, 5, called off as Ellen posts ‘crazy’ Montecito flood video

California storm - live: Search for swept away boy, 5, called off as Ellen posts ‘crazy’ Montecito flood video

Tens of thousands of people in California are without power as yet more intense rain storms and flooding hit the already-soaked state.

The bad weather saw the star-studded city of Montecito, where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle live, placed under an evacuation order, with the Montecito Fire Department urging residents to immediately leave their homes.

Officials said that five inches of rain had fallen in the area since the early hours, and more heavy weather was due to come this afternoon and evening.

Santa Barbara emergency officials then subsequently issued a shelter-in-place warning for those not already evacuated, advising them to go to the innermost room or high ground.

More severe weather is forecast for California this week after days of heavy rain, snow and damaging winds, raising the potential for flooding, rising rivers and mudslides on already saturated soils.

Key Points

  • Biden declares emergency in California

  • ‘This is crazy’: Ellen DeGeneres shares footage of raging torrent

  • Search called off for boy, 5, swept away by California floodwaters

  • Montecito Fire Department’s website crashes

No way to ‘get off the mountain’, says bird sanctuary owner

12:00 , Rachel Sharp

Santa Barbara Bird Sanctuary owner Jamie McLeod’s property was under the Montecito evacuation order, but she said there is no way for her to “get off the mountain” with a rushing creek on one side and a mudslide on the other.

The 60-year-old said one of her employees came to make a weekly food delivery and is stuck, as well.

Ms McLeod said she feels fortunate because her home sits on high ground and the power is still on. But she said she tires of the frequent evacuation orders since the massive wildfire followed by the deadly landslide five years ago.

“It is not easy to relocate,” she was quoted by AP as saying.

“I totally love it — except in catastrophe.”

Thunderstorm forecasted for Bay Area

11:20 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

The San Francisco Bay Area is expected to receive another round of storm activity today with thunderstorms, as a potent atmospheric river continues to bear down on California.

The National Weather Service’s storm prediction centre has a “marginal risk” for thunderstorms across the greater San Francisco Bay Area today.

“If you’re in an area that gets a heavy thunderstorm, there’s potential for it to exacerbate any flooding that’s going on in your area,” Brooke Bingaman, a forecaster with the weather service, told SFGATE.

“Even though it’s a 5 to 15 per cent chance, we still need people to be on their toes. They need to listen to local officials for evacuation orders.”

Video: Montecito residents struggle to cross street amid flooding situation

10:20 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

The entire community of Montecito and surrounding canyons scarred by recent wildfires were under an evacuation order that came on the fifth anniversary of a mudslide that killed 23 people and destroyed more than 100 homes.

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Harry and Meghan’s hometown of Montecito evacuated

09:20 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s hometown of Montecito is under an evacuation order due to heavy rain after days of severe storms battered California.

The Montecito Fire Department urged residents to immediately leave their homes yesterday after heavy rain deluged the area from the early hours, with worse to come this afternoon and evening. The fire department later tweeted that their website had crashed due to heavy traffic.

Louise Boyle has more.

Harry and Meghan’s hometown of Montecito evacuated

Search called off for boy swept away by California floodwaters

08:40 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

The search has been called off for a five-year-old boy who was swept away by floodwaters in California after his mother’s truck got stuck in a swollen creek.

Authorities say that Cal Fire responded to a 911 call to help a vehicle that had become stuck in the San Marcos Creek creekbed near Paso Robles, California.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office says that the search was called off because the intense weather conditions became too unsafe for first responders, according to KSBY.

Graeme Massie reports.

Search called off for boy, 5, swept away by California floodwaters

Thousands still without power in California

08:00 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

More than 70,000 homes, businesses and other power customers in California still don’t have electricity, according to PowerOutage.us.

Earlier yesterday, over 120,000 homes and businesses were left struggling in the winter without power still without power after a massive storm last week that disrupted road travel with flash floods.

Ellen DeGeneres urges Montecito residents to be safe

07:20 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

Ellen DeGeneres has urged residents of Montecito, in California, to “stay safe” as the area continues to experience “unprecedented” weather conditions.

The US talk show host and comedian posted a video of herself from near her home beside a rushing river.

Speaking in a video on her social media accounts, DeGeneres said: “This is crazy”.

“We are having unprecedented rain. This creek near to our house never flows ever (and it’s) probably about nine feet up. It could go another two feet up. We have horses ready to evacuate.”

Read more here.

Ellen DeGeneres shares footage of raging torrent as storm hits star-studded Montecito

90% of Californians are under flood watch

06:40 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

More than 34 million Californians were under a flood watch yesterday – about 90 per cent of the state’s population as weather forecasters warned of the risk of flooding and debris flow.

“Thunderstorms are possible Tuesday with best chances between 4 am and 8 pm. Lightning, heavy rain, gusty winds, small hail, and funnel clouds are possible. When thunder roars, head indoors,” the National Weather Service said.

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Meanwhile, the governor’s office in a tweet asked Californians to “pay attention to local alerts, don’t cross flood waters, and avoid downed power lines”.

Death toll climbs to 14

06:00 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

The death toll from the relentless string of storms climbed to 14 yesterday, after two people were killed by falling trees, state officials said.

Tens of thousands of people remained without power and some schools closed for the day as streets and highways transformed into gushing rivers, trees toppled and motorists growled through roadblocks caused by fallen debris.

The entire community of Montecito and surrounding canyons scarred by recent wildfires were under an evacuation order that came on the fifth anniversary of a mudslide that killed 23 people and destroyed more than 100 homes.

Heavy rainfall forecasted for today

05:20 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

Heavy rainfall is forecasted throughout California today and northern parts of the state tomorrow, increasing the potential for flooding given saturated soils from the previous two weeks of precipitation.

According to the National Weather Service, rainfall levels are 400-600 per cent above average across California.

The weather service has warned of a “relentless parade of cyclones” over the coming days that will exacerbate the risk of flooding.

Governor asks Californians to be ‘hyper-vigilant’

04:40 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

Governor Gavin Newsom has urged Californians to be “hyper-vigilant” and keep their guard up as strong winds and heavy rains continue to threaten communities across the state.

He said: “There are still several days of severe winter weather ahead and we need all Californians to be alert and heed the advice of emergency officials.

“Thanks to the President signing off on our request for emergency declaration, we are mobilising all available resources at every level of government to protect lives and limit storm damage.”

Biden declares emergency in California

04:17 , Alisha Rahaman Sarkar

President Joe Biden yesterday issued an emergency declaration to support storm response and relief efforts in more than a dozen counties.

The president approved the emergency declaration during a visit in Mexico City for the North American Leaders’ Summit.

California governor Gavin Newsom said he’s in close contact with the White House to ensure the state has adequate aid.

California soaked by yet another winter storm

04:00 , Graeme Massie

A cleaning crew walks through floodwaters in the Rio Del Mar neighborhood of Aptos, Calif., Monday, Jan. 9, 2023 (AP)
A cleaning crew walks through floodwaters in the Rio Del Mar neighborhood of Aptos, Calif., Monday, Jan. 9, 2023 (AP)

Winter storms boost California snowpack to 200%

03:29 , Graeme Massie

California’s snow water equivalent is 199% of normal for 9 January, according to the California Department of Water Resources.

The Southern Sierra is 222 per cent of normal, the Central Sierra is 201 per cent, while the Northern Sierra/Trinity is 173 per cent.

“We are seeing the best start to our snowpack in over a decade,” DWR tweeted. “But it is only a start – most of the winter season has yet to unfold.”

CHP posts video of massive rock slide

02:45 , Graeme Massie

Authorities in California shared a video of a massive rock slide caused by winter storms.

Los Angeles officials warn of worsening conditions

02:05 , Graeme Massie

“Rain and wind expected to intensify through evening, we advise all road users to practice caution,” tweeted LA Department of Transportation on Monday evening.

California driver dies after driving past road closure signs into flood water

01:37 , Graeme Massie

California Highway Patrol officers say a female motorist died after driving past road closure signs in San Luis Obispo County.

Officials say that the woman drove onto the flooded Avila Beach Drive into flood water and drowned, according to The San Luis Obispo Tribune.

Eighteen people rescued from island in Ventura River

01:00 , Graeme Massie

The Ventura County Fire Department says that it rescued 18 people living on an island in the Ventura River on Monday.

“In total 18 victims were rescued, 1 person required medical attention for their minor injuries. 7 people were rescued using a ladder, 7 by air and 4 walked out,” the department tweeted.

‘This is crazy’: Ellen DeGeneres shares footage of raging torrent as storm hits star-studded Montecito

00:32 , Graeme Massie

‘We need to be nicer to mother nature,’ TV host warns.

Tom Murray has the story.

Ellen DeGeneres shares footage of raging torrent as storm hits star-studded Montecito

Ellen DeGeneres sheltering in place in Montecito posts video of storm flooding

Monday 9 January 2023 23:56 , Graeme Massie

“Montecito is under mandatory evacuation. We are on higher ground so they asked us to shelter in place. Please stay safe everyone,” the star posted on Instagram.

Search called off for boy, 5, swept away by California floodwaters

Monday 9 January 2023 23:43 , Graeme Massie

Authorities say that Cal Fire responded to a 911 call to help a vehicle that had become stuck in the San Marcos Creek creekbed near Paso Robles, California, on Monday morning.

Search called off for boy, 5, swept away by California floodwaters

Social media videos capture Montecito water levels

Monday 9 January 2023 22:59 , Graeme Massie

Montecito mudslide remembrance event cancelled

Monday 9 January 2023 22:55 , Graeme Massie

Twenty-three people died and 100 homes were destroyed in devastating mudslides in the city five years ago.

Montecito Fire Department’s website crashes

Monday 9 January 2023 22:46 , Graeme Massie

“Our website is down due to high traffic. Please stay tuned to our social media channels for updates,” the fire department stated on Twitter.

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Serious storm hits California

Monday 9 January 2023 22:40 , Graeme Massie

 (AP)
(AP)

California hometown of Oprah, Katy Perry and Harry and Meghan evacuated over floods

Monday 9 January 2023 22:35 , Graeme Massie

Harry and Meghan’s hometown of Montecito evacuated due to extreme rain

Monday 9 January 2023 22:26 , Graeme Massie

Ritzy city, where celebs like Oprah Winfrey and Katy Perry also live, is under an evacuation order due to heavy rain after days of severe storms battered Southern California.

Louise Boyle has the story.

Harry and Meghan’s hometown of Montecito evacuated

California storm blog

Monday 9 January 2023 22:18 , Graeme Massie

This is a blog on intense storms hitting California.

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