Rescuers continue to search for people in rubble of U.S. mudslide

A member of the Long Beach Search and Rescue team looks for survivors in a car in Montecito

UPDATE: Rescues start as mud threatens California areas

Some of Montecito's famous residents - Ellen DeGeneres and Oprah Winfrey - are speaking out about the devastating mudslides that have ravaged Southern California on DeGeneres' daytime talk show in an episode airing Thursday.

The mudslides began around 2:30 a.m. on Tuesday, when intense rains dislodged boulders and caused heavy mudflow along hillsides that were scarred by the sprawling Thomas fire late a year ago. "You hear the word mudslides and you have no idea the impact that it has". "You've seen the news".

Brown did say that of the 17 people he announced were missing Wednesday, some were identified as among the dead and were crossed off the list. People who are in their homes waiting to be rescued, they don't know what's happening because there's no power, there's no water.

The death toll resulting from mudslides that devastated a California town has climbed to 18 as rescue crews continued to search Saturday for seven people who are still missing, amid diminishing hope that survivors would be found.

The media maven endured minimal home damage compared to other residents, but her heart went out to those who are missing or lost relatives in the mudslide. She says, "we've gotten false warnings during the fire, so we've sheltered in place".

She proceeded to show photos of some of the destruction in the area, explaining that because of the fires, "trees had no roots to hold the hillside" amid all the rain.

Oprah accepting her Golden Globe.

DeGeneres also posted scenes on social media this week.

"Neighborhoods were just completely wiped out", she said, "Mud took everything with it".

"After everything we have been through, I think a lot of people thought they were just being overly cautious, but exactly what they feared happened".

Excavators carrying rescuers in their buckets plowed through mud-coated roads in search of the missing after some areas were buried in as much as 15 feet (4.6 m) of mud, emergency officials said.

"Where I am now, which is the east side of my property, I was walking down here and all of my neighbors' homes are gutted". His voice quivered and he paused several times as he described seeing the body, repeating several times it's "just so devastating".

Winfrey also asked some passing firefighters to speak about their recovery efforts in the area as she and DeGeneres praised them for their efforts.

"This is the street in front of our house", she said. "We're gonna come together and we're gonna do what great Americans do all the time and we're gonna help each other".

Winfrey then FaceTimed into the show, showing off the damage on her own property.

Winfrey posted videos on Instagram showing her wading through almost knee-deep mud on her property and later inspecting the damage.

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