SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. - On Thursday, California Gov. Jerry Brown announced that FEMA has granted the state's request for expanded federal disaster aid in response to the deadly mudslides that have impacted Santa Barbara County.
FEMA expanded the recently approved Presidential Major Disaster Declaration to include damage from flooding and debris/mud flows as a consequence of the Thomas Fire, which to date has burned over 280,000 acres and is 92% contained.
The declaration makes sure that federal funds are available for emergency response and eligible recovery costs.
Following the devastating mudslides, the governor activated the State Operations Center in Mather, California who is coordinating closely with local, state, and federal emergency response agencies to address all emergency management needs.
"Multiple state resources have been mobilized in Santa Barbara County, including: urban search and rescue teams and emergency management personnel from Cal OES; high-water vehicles for evacuations and helicopters from the California National Guard; and personnel from the California Department of Transportation and California Highway Patrol, who are working together to reroute traffic and clear Highway 101 and other roadways," said the governor's office.
“Our hearts break for the communities first ravaged by fires and now devastated by these mudslides. We will push for every available resource to help Californians recover from these tragedies,” said Gov. Brown.