Crews are rescuing residents from homes as mud and debris from wildfire-scarred hillsides inundate Southern California neighborhoods during a powerful winter storm.
"I came around the house and heard a deep rumbling, an ominous sound I knew was. boulders moving as the mud was rising", said Thomas Tighe, who discovered two of his cars missing from the driveway.
Amtrak says its Pacific Surfliner and Coast Starlight services and bus connections between Santa Barbara and Oxnard have been suspended and there isn't any alternative transportation right now.
Emergency responders load a person caught in Santa Barbara County's first major storm of the year.
Also in Montecito, Ben Hyatt told CNN that a river of mud had crashed through a neighbor's house.
Heavy rains were triggering risky flooding Tuesday, January 9, 2017, morning in Southern California, with rivers of mud and debris destroying at least three homes and pooling water forcing police to close parts of the coastal US Route 101, .
A large swath of the state from San Diego to the Central Valley and east to the Sierra Nevada could see another 1 to 3 inches of rain through the day, The Weather Channel reported.
Thousands of people in parts of Ventura and Los Angeles counties had been ordered to evacuate.
Besides heavy rain, snow is expected as low as 4,000 feet early Tuesday, which could make for treacherous driving conditions in mountain areas while wind gusts may approach 60 miles per hour along the coast.
The 101 Freeway is closed in both directions from Highway 126 in Ventura and north to the Milpas Street exit in Santa Barbara until further notice, according to Caltrans.
Even if the steady rain dies down, forecasters said, flash flooding and debris flows will remain a threat for the next several hours.
In Burbank, city officials said voluntary evacuations were recommended for neighborhoods near where the La Tuna Fire burned thousands of acres in September. "I saw them covered in mud and shaking from the cold".
"We're performing multiple rescues". There were between 10 and 20 homes that still needed to be evacuated, he said at the time. Police and fire officials in Los Angeles helped with evacuations in areas damaged by the Creek and Fish fires, officials said. It was not immediately clear if the accident was related to the rain, and a cause is still under investigation. "Go to high ground".
The National Weather Service says that more than 2 inches (5centimeters) of rain fell at Sonoma County Airport's and that up to 1 1/2 additional inches were expected by Tuesday morning.
Tom Piozet reported from Montecito, and Erik Ortiz reported from NY.