Rescuers search for survivors of California mudslides

Last updated at 07:08
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Southern California deals with dangerous mudslides

Hundreds of rescuers in southern California are working hard after mudslides hit the area.

They're helping those affected, as well as searching for other people who may be missing.

The mudslides and flooding caused huge amounts of damage with witnesses describing large rocks, the size of small cars, rolling down hills, blocking roads and destroying houses.

At least 17 people have died, and more than 150 have been taken to hospital.

Boulders the size of cars rolled down hills and slammed into roadwaysTwitter/@eliasonmike
Huge boulders like this rolled down hills and into homes and roads

Thousands of people who live in the area have left, and more than 50 rescues have been carried out. One of those rescued was a 14-year-old girl.

The mudslides were so powerful that some homes were even knocked off their foundations in the community of Montecito.

Mud fills the interior of a car destroyed in a rain-driven mudslide in a neighborhood under mandatory evacuation in Burbank, California, January 9, 2018. Mudslides unleashed by a ferocious storm demolished homes in southern California, authorities said Tuesday. Five people were reported killed. /Getty Images
Mud almost completely filled up the interior of this car in Burbank, California - one of the areas that had been completely evacuated.

Police have said some areas "looked like a World War One battlefield".

They have closed more than 30 miles of the main coastal road because of the "waist-high" water levels.

Thousands of California residents were asked to leave their homes on Monday for the second time in two months, after already facing wildfires back in December.

Some of the worst affected homes weren't within an evacuation zone set up by police.

A bulldozer clears mud off the road near a flooded section of US 101 freeway near the San Ysidro exit in Montecito, California on January 9, 2018.Getty Images
Bulldozers are being used to clear mud off the road near a flooded section of US 101 freeway in Montecito, California.