Sunday, August 30 , 2015, 1:24 pm | Fair 84.0º




Rainfall Totals Lower Than Expected from April Storm

Forecasters are calling for a warm weekend and sunny skies well into next week

By Tom Bolton, Noozhawk Executive Editor | @tombol |

Rainfall was mostly light from a late-season storm that passed through the Central Coast on Wednesday night and Thursday, according to the Santa Barbara County Public Works Department.

Precipitation totals varied widely, with the wettest areas getting nearly three-fourths of an inch and some stations recording less than a tenth of an inch.

As of midafternoon Thursday, the gauge at KTYD in Santa Barbara had the highest 24-hour total at 0.69 inches. A few other gauges around the county had slightly lower readings.

At the other end of the scale, Carpinteria had 0.12 inches and Bald Mountain northeast of Los Olivos had 0.08 inches.

Other 24-hour readings included Goleta and Buellton, both 0.36, Santa Maria at 0.23, Lompoc at 0.54 and Santa Ynez at 0.41.

National Weather Service forecasters were calling for isolated showers Thursday afternoon, with a 20 percent chance of rain.

Bonnie Bartling, a weather specialist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard, said that because the storm was coming from a more southerly direction, it didn’t track the way a normal winter storm does, which was why the rainfall was less than expected in some areas.

Sunny skies are expected to return Friday and extend well into next week, with highs peaking Saturday in the low 70s.

“It should be nice, warm up a little bit, dry, sunny skies,” Bartlett said. “Should be a great weekend.”

As of Thursday, most areas of Santa Barbara County remained well below seasonal rainfall averages. Santa Barbara, with 11.60 inches, is at 67 percent of normal. Other figures include Goleta at 74 percent of normal, Carpinteria at 51 percent, Santa Maria at 70 percent and Lompoc at 71 percent. The rural community of Sisquoc is closest to normal with 90 percent (13.32 inches).

Lake Cachuma, which supplies water for much of the South Coast as well as the Santa Ynez and Lompoc valleys, was 85.8 percent full, and about 10 feet below spill level.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.




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