Montecito Floods, January 2018

Please join Westmont in praying for the Montecito community, which has suffered devastating impacts from flooding and mudslides, including the loss of life and many homes.

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News Alert

We welcomed our students back to campus on January 16 and restarted spring semester on January 17. We gathered for a barbecue Tuesday evening and a community meeting to reflect on the events of the past week and look ahead with hope.

We’re encouraging students to discover a historic moment and life story unfolding before them and to show our neighbors and community that we care and want to help serve them. Student leaders will oversee the Student Community Recovery Team, which will work with Montecito Covenant Church and community organizations such as the United Way and the Food Bank to coordinate service teams in the community.

“We can be great citizens at this time,” says President Gayle D Beebe. “Let’s be at our best as we interact with each other and the community around us.”

To prepare for upcoming rain, we’ll continue monitoring weather reports and updates daily and hourly as needed. The Montecito Fire Department has approved Murchison Gymnasium as a secure shelter-in-place location in the unlikely event we need it. Fortunately, our topography offers protection as we sit on a ridge that straddles two small creeks and have little exposure to landslides. Please refer to the watershed graphic below for more information.

Many of you have asked how you can help Westmont. One way is making a gift to the President's Disaster Recovery Fund.

Please join Westmont in praying for the Montecito community, which has suffered devastating impacts from flooding and mudslides, including the loss of life and many homes.

Watershed Above Westmont

westmont watershed

As shown on this map, the Westmont campus (maroon star) sits below a very small bowl of under 200 acres—little larger than the campus itself (purple area on left)—less than 50% of which was burned in the Thomas Fire. It drained safely and completely, without flooding or debris flow, in the 3-inch deluge on 1/9/18. Providentially, we are blessed with favorable topography, sitting on a ridge that straddles two small creeks, and with little exposure to landslide.

The pink zones are under Evacuation Order as of 1/14/18, and the yellow zones depict the Warning area. The black border indicates the Exclusion Zone where the public is subject to arrest.

westmont welcomes students back

KEYT reports from Westmont about resuming classes after the Montecito mudslides

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thomas fire

Athletic Director Dave Odell rescues a friend.

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thomas fire

President Beebe does a live interview on the Frank Sontag radio show.

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