NEWS
11/01/2018 4:23 AM AEDT | Updated 11/01/2018 9:46 AM AEDT

Photos Capture Brutal Devastation Of California Mudslides

'It looked like a World War I battlefield'.

Streets turned to seething rivers. Buildings inundated with debris. The mangled frames of abandoned cars, drenched in mud.

As Southern California takes on the heavy burden of cleaning up from what’s become a one-two punch of devastating wildfires followed by heavy rains that caused deadly mudslides, this is some of the detritus left behind.

In addition to the physical damage, the floods have taken a human toll as well. Santa Barbara County officials said Wednesday at least 15 people are dead and 20 injured thanks to the onslaught of mud and water.

“The only words I can really think of to describe what it looked [like] was it looked like a World War I battlefield,” Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown said Tuesday. “It was literally a carpet of mud and debris everywhere.”

Here are some photos from the region:

  • Kenneth Song/Santa Barbara News-Press via REUTERS
    Water, mud and debris engulfed the first floor on the Montecito Inn in Montecito, California.
  • Kenneth Song/Santa Barbara News-Press via REUTERS
    Emergency personnel carry a woman rescued from a collapsed house after a mudslide.
  • Handout / Reuters
    Mudslides damaged a home on Hot Springs Road in Montecito.
  • Handout / Reuters
    Boulders block a road after a mudslide.
  • Handout / Reuters
    Emergency personnel search through debris and damaged homes.
  • ROBYN BECK via Getty Images
    Two cars washed downhill in a rain-driven mudslide in a neighborhood under mandatory evacuation in Burbank, California.
  • ROBYN BECK via Getty Images
    Mud filled the interior of a car destroyed in Burbank.
  • Handout / Reuters
    Emergency personnel search through debris and mud flow in Montecito.
  • Handout / Reuters
    A section of the Union Pacific Railroad is blocked by mudflow and debris in Montecito.
  • Handout . / Reuters
    A man is rescued from flood waters and debris in Montecito.
  • Handout / Reuters
    Emergency personnel escort people from flood waters.
  • Handout / Reuters
    An overturned car is entangled in a tree in Montecito.
  • Handout / Reuters
    Debris floats on the 101 freeway in Montecito.
  • Handout / Reuters
    Abandoned vehicles are mired on the flooded freeway.
  • Wally Skalij via Getty Images
    Mud and debris clog a road next to the Montecito Inn.
  • ROBYN BECK via Getty Images
    Journalists stand in ankle-deep mud in Burbank.
  • NurPhoto via Getty Images
    Firefighters clear debris from a mudslide in Los Angeles.
  • NurPhoto via Getty Images
    A resident shovels mud in a Los Angeles neighborhood.
  • Handout / Reuters
    An abandoned car floats along the freeway in Montecito.
  • Wally Skalij via Getty Images
    A Coast Guard helicopter heads to Montecito as a rainbow appears.