The Latest: Mexican woman, 2 children died in mudslides

Bill Asher walks through mud in his home damaged by storms in Montecito, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of the mudslides that slammed this wealthy coastal town. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Alex Broumand of the Montecito Fire Department walks in mud in front of homes damaged from storms in Montecito, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of the mudslides that slammed this wealthy coastal town. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
A Cal Fire search and rescue crew works at a home damaged by storms in Montecito, Calif., Friday, Jan. 12, 2018. The mudslide swept through the coastal community on Tuesday morning, catching many off-guard. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
A car sits in flooded water on Highway 101 in Montecito, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of Tuesday's storm after mudslides slammed this wealthy coastal town. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
A firefighter cleans debris from an area damaged by storms in Montecito, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of the mudslides that slammed this wealthy coastal town. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
A car sits in flooded water in Montecito, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of Tuesday's storm after mudslides slammed this wealthy coastal town. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Mud and rocks are shown at a home damaged by storms in Montecito, Calif., Friday, Jan. 12, 2018. The mudslide swept through the coastal community on Tuesday morning, catching many off-guard. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Emergency workers search areas damaged from storms in Montecito, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of the mudslides that slammed this wealthy coastal town. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
A man stands on a muddy road damaged from storms in Montecito, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Rescue workers slogged through knee-deep ooze and used long poles to probe for bodies Thursday as the search dragged on for victims of the mudslides that slammed this wealthy coastal town. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

MONTECITO, Calif. — The Latest on deadly debris flows that devastated Montecito, California (all times local):

_____

1:30 p.m.

A Mexican woman says her 27-year-old sister, her 3-year-old niece and the girl's 10-year-old cousin died when pre-dawn mudslides hit the home they were renting in Montecito.

Jennifer Ramos says Marilyn Ramos shared the home with her husband, Antonio Benitez, and the family of his brother, Victor Benitez.

The Benitez brothers survived. But Victor Benitez lost one of his sons, 10-year-old Jonathan Benitez, and his wife, Fabiola, is missing.

Jennifer Ramos says the Benitez brothers and Victor Benitez's 2-year-old son is in the hospital with injuries.

The Benitez brothers are gardeners.

Jennifer Ramos says Marilyn Ramos called home daily to her family in her native town of Marquelia near Acapulco on Mexico's Pacific coast.

She says Marilyn Ramos doted on her only child, Kailly.

_____

12:05 p.m.

The partner of one of the people killed in the California mudslides says the victim had just enough time to shout, "'grab onto some wood and don't let go.'" before he was swept to his death.

Authorities announced Thursday that 73-year-old Peter Fleurat was among those who died in Montecito.

He and his partner of 17 years, Ralph "Lalo" Barajas, were swept out of their home before dawn Tuesday by the devastating slide.

Barajas, owner of a Santa Barbara restaurant, survived with cuts and bruises and a sprained neck.

___

10:50 a.m.

The huge wildfire that led to this week's devastating debris flows in Montecito, California, is finally 100 percent contained.

The U.S. Forest Service made the announcement Friday after aerial surveys of the 440-square-mile (1,140-square-kilometer) scar left by the so-called Thomas fire.

The fire erupted Dec. 4 in Ventura County, destroying hundreds of homes before it spread into Santa Barbara County and threatened more communities including Montecito.

It continued to smolder before a drenching Pacific storm hit bare hills and mountains this week, unleashing debris-laden flash floods that swept away homes and killed at least 17 people.

The Thomas fire was the largest wildfire in recorded California history.

___

6:55 a.m.

Southern California authorities say the number of people missing since debris-laden flash floods smashed through the community of Montecito is now five, down from as many as 43 a day earlier.

Santa Barbara County spokeswoman Amber Anderson released the latest number early Friday.

Anderson says the number dropped because people were located, but it could continue to fluctuate greatly.

She says some missing-person reports are rapidly cleared while others take a long time to resolve.

The number of confirmed fatalities remains at 17.

Anderson says the number of personnel searching ravaged neighborhoods has doubled over the past day to 1,250.

___

11:31 p.m.

The oldest victim swept away in a California mudslide was Jim Mitchell, who had celebrated his 89th birthday the day before. He died with his wife of more than 50 years, Alice.

The youngest, 3-year-old Kailly Benitez, was one of four children killed.

As their names and those of 14 other victims were released Thursday, crews kept digging through the muck and rubble looking for more people.

Santa Barbara fire Capt. Gary Pitney said the likelihood is increasing that rescue crews will be finding bodies instead of survivors at this point.

The mudslide swept through the coastal community of Montecito on Tuesday morning, catching many of the victims entirely off-guard.

You may also interested in

TV executive predicts 500-show bubble destined to deflate

Aug 9, 2016

Television viewers know there's a mind-boggling array of shows to attempt to watch, but FX Networks chief executive John Landgraf predicts that change is coming

4 months after Japan earthquake, final victim may be found

Aug 10, 2016

Nearly four months later, the final victim of two deadly earthquakes in southern Japan may have been found

Criticism of lavish funeral for Anne of Romania

Aug 10, 2016

The presidents of Romania and Moldova pay their last respects to Anne of Romania at a 19th-century royal castle amid some criticism about the grand royal funeral

People also read these

House Speaker Paul Ryan wins GOP nomination to run again

Aug 10, 2016

House Speaker Paul Ryan has defeated a longshot Republican primary challenger who had been praised by Donald Trump

If Trump can't get along with GOP, how will he govern?

Aug 9, 2016

Beyond the political fallout from Donald Trump's rocky relationship with party elders lies a fundamental reality: Should he win the presidency, the brash billionaire will have to work closely with the same GOP leaders he vilified on the campaign trail

Florida officials go into damage-control mode over Zika

Aug 6, 2016

Worried about Florida's all-important tourism industry, state officials are going into damage-control mode over Zika

Weather, 20 December
Houston Weather
+7

High: +11° Low: -2°

Humidity: 83%

Wind: NNE - 7 KPH

Canberra Weather
+27

High: +27° Low: +17°

Humidity: 87%

Wind: W - 20 KPH

Roissy-en-France Weather
+6

High: +6° Low: -5°

Humidity: 87%

Wind: ENE - 7 KPH

Florence Weather
+9

High: +9° Low: +6°

Humidity: 97%

Wind: ENE - 17 KPH

Parga Weather
+7

High: +16° Low: +4°

Humidity: 100%

Wind: SE - 25 KPH