California mudslide takes lives of elderly, young; 5 missing

An emergency worker looks down from an overpass toward a flooded area of Highway 101 in Montecito Thursday. The highway will remain closed indefinitely, Caltrans announced Friday.

Marcio Jose Sanchez

Highway 101 from Santa Barbara to Carpinteria will not reopen Monday as anticipated, and no new estimated date for the reopening has been set, Caltrans officials said.

Search-and-rescue operations are the priority for crews working in the closed area from Milpas Street to Highway 150, and that affects progress toward reopening the highway, a Caltrans spokeswoman said.

Sara von Schwind, deputy director of maintenance and operations for Caltrans District 5, said reopening Highway 101 is the department’s highest priority, and Caltrans is closely coordinating work with the incident command “to get the job done as safely and quickly as possible.”

Updates on the potential reopening will be announced as progress is made, Caltrans officials said.

The 11-mile section of the highway has been closed since mudslides inundated the community of Montecito early Tuesday morning, sending water, mud and debris onto the freeway.


News Editor

Mike Hodgson is news editor at the Santa Ynez Valley News, where he writes about local government, special events and the people who live in the Valley. He has been a photographer, writer, news editor and managing editor at weekly newspapers since 1972

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