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America: Floods and landslides wreak havoc in California, Many Are Killed



Floods and landslides wreak havoc in California, Killing at Least 17 People

Since California is experiencing extreme cold, intense storms have increased significantly in intensity. Recently, floodwaters have submerged entire cities with several deaths reported already from this ongoing flood situation that started back in late December of 2016.

Flooding and landslides in California have caused power outages to over 110,000 homes and businesses, prompting more than 50,000 people to flee their areas immediately in order to escape imminent danger.

Capitola Experiences Major Flood Damage

A farm is surrounded by water as floodwaters from the Pajaro River inundate residents after days of heavy rain in Watsonville, California, U.S., March 16, 2023. REUTERS/David Swanson

Governor Gavin Newsom visited Capitola in Santa Cruz recently and reported at least 17 storm- and flood-related deaths since December of last year, due to flooding that has devastated this coastal community.

The California Highway Patrol released a statement about victims, which included both a pickup truck driver and motorcyclist who died when an eucalyptus tree collapsed onto Highway 99 near Visalia in San Joaquin Valley.

Landslides and Road Closures Continue to Plague Many Areas

“These conditions are life-threatening,” Newsom warned. A winter storm that hit California with over 45 cm of rain in Southern California mountains and 1.5 m of snow in Sierra Nevada ski resorts caused rockfall from mountains and landslides; flooding made many roads impassable; many homes isolated and vulnerable; even worse yet landslides covered them entirely in remote locations.

Flood waters engulfed Matilija Canyon and caused widespread flooding that submerged a home and cut off access to nearby Ojai, leaving all residents trapped here. Brian Briggs from Ojai commented, saying, “We are all trapped here”.

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