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Work Continues To Clear Creeks, Debris Basins Clogged By Santa Barbara County Flooding

(Photo by Mike Eliason, Santa Barbara County Fire Department)
Crews work to clear debris in the wake of the January 9th storm in Santa Barbara County

Even as the first funerals are taking place for flood victims, search and rescue teams continue the grim task of sifting through mud, and debris looking for the remains of three still missing people. 20 people died in the flooding.

Meanwhile, the around the clock efforts to open a closed section of Highway 101 in Montecito continue in the wake of January 9th’s disastrous flooding in Santa Barbara County. Crews are working towards a goal of a Monday reopening.

Other crews are busy in the creek beds and debris basins around Montecito, Summerland, and Carpinteria, trying to get them clear before the next storm arrives.

It’s a race against Mother Nature. Santa Barbara County crews, contractors, and teams from the Army Corps of Engineers are trying to clear channels and debris basins clogged by last week’s storm. Col. Curt Gibbs, with the Army Corps of Engineers says it’s critical they get the region’s infrastructure ready to handle the next storm. Gibbs admits that the 11 debris basins they are working on right now aren’t ready yet, but he promises they will be prepared in time. Crews have to deal with everything from giant boulders, tree trunks, and of course lots of mud, to debris from destroyed, and damaged homes.