Evacuations ordered for Harry and Meghan's town of Montecito

Evacuations ordered for Harry and Meghan's town of Montecito

Raining on their parade: Harry and Meghan are perilously close to mandatory evacuation zones in California as bomb cyclone drops up to seven inches of rain and 35 foot waves crash off the coast

  • Evacuation orders were issued Wednesday for Montecito, California 
  • The coastal town is home to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle
  • The orders come as California continues to see issues from the bomb cyclone 
  • Northern California has experienced the worst of the damage in the storm
  • Southern California is expected to see upwards of three more inches

California’s ‘bomb cyclone’ is continuing to send the state into chaos as residents experience up to seven inches of rain and 35-foot waves in some parts of the Golden State. 

One city recently placed under evacuation orders Wednesday evening is Montecito, which touts homeowners including Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, as well as media mogul Oprah Winfrey. 

Dangerous rain caused major damage five years ago in the area where 23 people died and more than 100 homes were destroyed as boulders, mud, and debris came down the mountains and into the coastal town. 

The evacuation order, which was lifted Thursday, is just the latest for the state which continues to see flash flooding and power outages for more than 100,000 people. 

Some coastal city residents woke up Thursday to waves cresting at 35 feet as well as tide surges on area beaches. 

Capitola Wharf, a pier located in Northern California, was split in half by the rough weather, with a portion drifting out to sea. 

Santa Barbara County, where Montecito is located, was one of two Southern California counties expected to see the heaviest rainfall, forecasters said.

The evacuation order was issued for the Alisal, Thomas, and Cave fire burn areas Wednesday evening as officials warned of potential mudslides and falling debris.

‘What we’re talking about here is a lot of water coming off the top of the hills, coming down into the creeks and streams and as it comes down, it gains momentum and that’s what the initial danger is,’  Montecito Fire Department Chief Kevin Taylor said.  

One Santa Barbara County spokesperson said sheriff’s deputies spent the night going door-to-door and alerting nearly 500 residents about the potential danger. 

An official number for those evacuated was not immediately available and the evacuation order was officially lifted Thursday afternoon. 

Harry and Meghan have lived in their $23 million home in the quiet seaside city since 2020 after stepping back from their royal duties in March of that year. 

One city recently placed under evacuation orders Wednesday evening is Montecito, which touts homeowners including Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Prince Harry was spotted Thursday by DailyMail.com photographers bracing the storm

This is the scene near the Los Angeles River which has flooded due to the rain 

The damage is far from over, as well. 

Overnight, a 2-year-old boy died in Occidental, California when a redwood tree fell over onto his family’s home in Sonoma County. 

‘Trees were falling left and right,’ due to the storm and ‘basically crushed the residence,’ said Sonoma County Sheriff’s Sgt. Juan Valencia. 

Winds have contributed to the extensive storm damage as some gusts have reached up to 130 miles per hour. 

California’s ‘ bomb-cyclone ‘ is continuing to cause major headaches for residents state-wide as heavy rain conditions threaten homes and businesses

More than 100,000 are still without power in the Golden State 

Some coastal towns have reported waves upwards of 35 feet at their crest 

Piers in Northern California were damaged and wiped out by the weather 

Drivers have been advised to stay off the roads 

One of the biggest issues has been winds knocking down trees and power lines

The storm has been described as one of the worst to ever hit California with many experts anticipating it could take years to recover. 

‘We anticipate that this may be one of the most challenging and impactful series of storms to touch down in California in the last five years,’ said Nancy Ward, director of the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services.

Governor Gavin Newsom earlier this week declared a state of emergency as the state faces deadly flashing flood warnings and other weather-related crises. 

The bomb cyclone (pictured) has barreled across the state, bringing heavy rain for up to 30 hours and could potentially cause a loss of life 

Cars sit stuck in a flooded underpass at Webster St. and 34th St. that has been flooded since this weekend’s storm in Oakland

This is Capitola Wharf where part of the pier was swept into the ocean by waves

The waves and rain have not stopped some in Southern California from visiting the beach

The situation was so dire, National Weather Service officials urged residents to charge up devices in anticipation of possible outages.

‘If you’ve still got power, it’s a good idea to charge your cellphone, computers, and tablets now while you can,’ one NWS meteorologist said. 

In total, 180,000 homes and businesses were without power Thursday morning as a result of the wind and rain, according to data from US Power Outage of California.

In addition to knocking down trees and powerlines, one Valero gas station’s awning completely buckled in San Francisco from the treacherous conditions. 

Photos and videos from local media show the overhead structure on its side covering up gas stations and pumps that were ripped out of the ground. 

The wind is so strong a Valero gas station in San Francisco bowed under the weight of it. The overhead structure is now laying on its side as the gas pumps are ripped out of the ground on King Drive and Callan Boulevard

The wind knocked over the structure as gusts are reaching up to 85mph 

Wind gusts reached over 100 miles per hour and put millions under wind alerts. 

Shockingly, the storm still has yet to hit what officials believe will be its peak. 

Fire and rescue crews across the state have been forced to perform rescues on stranded residents whose homes and businesses have flooded or been damaged by the storm. 

San Francisco fire officials on Wednesday said they rescued a family that had become trapped when a large tree fell on a sedan. 

They confirmed that the family was not critically injured.  

Los Angeles can expect two to three inches of rain through Sunday, while Big Sur can expect three to five, according to the Weather Channel.

San Francisco Fire Department worked hard to remove trees that had fallen on the roads 

San Francisco fire officials said they rescued a family that had become trapped when a large tree fell on a sedan

Wave forecasters with Surfline said Thursday’s ‘bomb cylone’ may be the worst the state has seen in 15 years, saying: ‘It’s not only really big, but it’s also really west in direction.’ 

The storm is one of three so-called atmospheric river storms in the last week to reach the drought-stricken state. 

Officials have also warned people throughout Northern California to stay off the roads as flooding has caused drivers to end up submerged and stranded. 

By Wednesday evening, nine Northern California counties were under flood watches or advisories.

Evacuation orders were in place in Santa Cruz County’s Paradise Park along the swiftly moving San Lorenzo River, as well as in areas along the Pajaro River. 

Residents who fled wildfires in the Santa Cruz Mountains in 2020 were packing their bags as the towns of Boulder Creek, Ben Lomond, and Felton were all warned they should be prepared to evacuate.

The power storm has caused California to declare a state of emergency and some areas have issued evacuations 

Almost the entire coast is under a flood watch as some areas are still reeling from the New Year’s Eve storm 

Sonoma County authorities issued an evacuation warning for residents along a stretch of the Russian River.

Meanwhile, 8,500 sandbags distributed by officials weren’t enough to meet demand as forecasters warned of imminent flooding.

Residents are also warned to beware of mudslides due to the heavy rainfall – which could give up to an inch an hour in some areas – the National Weather Service in San Francisco said. 

The rain is expected to last around 30 hours and it won’t stop until late Thursday evening. 

Three deaths have already been confirmed in Sacramento due to flooding. 

Sacramento’s Sheriff’s Office recovered a submerged body from a vehicle on Wednesday. In San Francisco had to rescue a family after a tree had fallen and trapped them. 

Since California was already hit with a devastating storm on New Year’s Eve, which already drenched the state with five inches of rain, according to USA Today. 

The already saturated ground could cause landslides, and mudslides and the worst flooding is in low-elevation areas. 

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