MONTECITO (CBSLA) — A Montecito man was able to grab his cellphone and capture a raging mudslide coming down his block.
The video is rare and frightening at the same time. It shows how Mother Nature’s power could destroy everything in her path.
KCAL9’s Randy Paige spoke to Marco Farrell, who said the video was just the beginning of his ordeal. He said he heard the roaring mudslide before he saw it.
“Imagine your worst nightmare,” Farrell said. “A monster rolling down the street.”
Farrell knew he only had a few seconds to get out of the way of the debris and mud when he saw a friend pull up right in front of him.
Farrell can be heard yelling excitedly at his friend to turn around.
“The flash flood’s right there,” he screamed. “The flash flood’s right there. Get out of here! Go!”
Paige asked Farrell what was going through his mind when he saw the debris racing down the block.
“It was a million miles an hour and in slow motion, if that makes sense. I clicked into survival gear, survival mode.”
He immediately thought of his mother and father and his three-legged dog named Lucas.
Farrell can then be heard on the video yelling at his mother to wake his father.
They were trapped by mud and debris coming down both sides of the house.
The mud kept trying to get in.
“Every second, it’s just roaring and banging against the house in the most vicious, violent sounds you’ve ever heard.”
The family waited, huddled in a hallway, as the mud began to rise.
After about an hour, the mud began to subside, and Farrell says he went outside and saw a flatbed truck driven by firefighters. They jumped into the truck and were driven to safety.
“I said ‘Mom, I need you to calm down and repeat after me: ‘We are alive’ and that was our mantra, and it became real when we sat on that flatbed. Like nothing else, we’re alive.”
Farrell said he learned a valuable lesson in this tragedy.
“Listen to the authorities. Absolutely, listen to the authorities. Don’t even risk it. It’s a night of inconvenience. But the hell we lived through for close to two hours, literally of every second thinking I just caused my parents death, and my death, and my dog’s death. It’s not worth it.”
Every inch of the Farrell home has mud in it. The debris left behind shows the power of the mudslide.