Tuesday, June 19 , 2018, 6:13 am | Fair 53º


Local News

Flash-Flood Watch Extended to Thursday in Jesusita Fire Area

South Coast reports few problems, but rain-swollen Santa Maria River floods Guadalupe neighborhood

The deluge from a series of slow-moving weekend storms ran up the rainfall totals on Santa Barbara County’s South Coast on Sunday. So far, however, it’s the North County that has encountered the most problems.

With another massive storm on the way, meanwhile, the National Weather Service extended a flash-flood watch through Thursday afternoon for Santa Barbara County, including the Jesusita Fire burn area. Aside from localized flooding and a few mud and rock slides, the South Coast has largely escaped damage from the three days of rain.

Guadalupe was not so fortunate. Around 7:30 p.m. Sunday, the Santa Maria River surged out of its banks and flooded lower Pioneer Street at Ninth Street in the community west of Santa Maria. No injuries were reported, but authorities said at least two houses were flooded before the water receded. A small apartment complex and Guadalupe Apostolic Church, 893 Ninth St., were evacuated, as well, and officials said the American Red Cross-Santa Barbara County Chapter was providing shelter for about 15 evacuees.

At 11 a.m. Monday, the county Public Works Department reported rainfall totals of at least 5 inches throughout much of the county, with the foothills and mountains above Santa Barbara receiving the most. Tecolote Canyon west of Goleta had recorded 12.93 inches of rain in the last week, El Deseo Ranch off East Camino Cielo above Montecito 12.66 inches, San Marcos Pass 11.48 inches, La Cumbre Peak and Mount Calvary 11.07 inches, the Edison Trail above Carpinteria 9.68 inches and Refugio Pass 9.71 inches. Goleta reported 7.64 inches of rainfall and downtown Santa Barbara 7.46 inches.

Click here for the Santa Barbara County Public Works Department’s interactive precipitation map.

Highway 101 near Milpas Street in Santa Barbara County has reopened after being closed temporarily Monday morning in various locations for pothole repair.

Caltrans reported Monday that Highway 192 was closed east of Santa Monica Road in Santa Barbara County after a tree knocked down power lines. In addition, Highway 1 was closed in Santa Barbara County between Black and Soloman roads at the Rancho Maria Golf Course in Orcutt because of flooding.

Farther north, Highway 41 between Highways 46 and 33 in San Luis Obispo and Kings County was closed Monday morning because of a mudslide but has since reopened.

The county Office of Emergency Services said Sunday that county Flood Control District crews are clearing recently constructed debris racks in the burn areas while county road crews are responding to mud and rock slides and reports of localized flooding. Officials cautioned motorists to not drive over submerged roads.

Officials said rock slides have closed Gibraltar Road above Santa Barbara and San Marcos Road between Highway 154 and Twin Peaks. Mountain Drive is open west of Ashley Road in Montecito, but several debris slides have been reported.

Steady, if lighter, rain is forecast for Monday, but a much more powerful storm is due to arrive Tuesday. That storm, spawned by a strong low-pressure system in the Gulf of Alaska, will be colder and more unstable than the weekend’s warm subtropical storms, weather officials said. Wind gusts up to 30 mph are likely Tuesday afternoon and thunderstorms are possible through Wednesday night. 

Warming shelters for local homeless will be open at the following locations this week from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m.:

» Monday: First United Methodist Church on the corner of Garden and Anapamu streets, the Unitarian Society of Santa Barbara on the corner of Arrellaga and Santa Barbara streets and the Santa Barbara Rescue Mission chapel at 535 E. Yanonali St. The Unitarian Society’s shelter will be held in the classrooms behind the courtyard to the left of the main sanctuary. Attendees at the Rescue Mission chapel may arrive late and sleep with their belongings on the floor of the chapel.

» Tuesday and Wednesday: Unitarian Society, the Rescue Mission chapel and First Presbyterian Church, on the corner of State and Constance streets. At First Presbyterian, attendees may walk up and look for signs or get a ride at 6 p.m. at the Unitarian Society.

In extending the weekend flash-flood watch until Thursday afternoon, the weather service said the heavy rains make dangerous debris flows possible in recent burn areas, including the 8,700-acre footprint of the Jesusita Fire, which raged above Santa Barbara in 2009, and that year’s La Brea Fire near New Cuyama. Rainfall of more than an inch an hour is possible at times.

Sandbags are available at these South Coast locations:

» Santa Barbara City Corporate Annex Yard, 401 E. Yanonali St., 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

» Santa Barbara Fire Station 7, 2411 Stanwood Drive, 24 hours a day until further notice

» At the end of County Dump Road by the South Coast Recycling & County Transfer Station, 4430 Calle Real

» Next to county Fire Station 14, 320 N. Los Carneros Road

» Montecito Fire Station 1, 595 San Ysidro Road Road

» Carpinteria Public Works Department, 5775 Carpinteria Ave.

» Carpinteria-Summerland Fire Protection District Station 2, 2375 Lillie Ave., Summerland

» In Santa Maria on West Foster Road

Daytime temperatures through Wednesday are expected to be in the 50s, with overnight lows in the 50s. Thursday and Friday should be sunny with highs in the low 60s and overnight lows in the 40s.

Christmas Day has a chance of rain in the forecast, with mostly cloudy conditions and a high temperature in the 60s.

The rain was good news for Santa Barbara County’s reservoirs. Officials said Sunday afternoon that Gibraltar Reservoir is up 4½ feet since the storms rolled in Friday while Lake Cachuma is also receiving Santa Ynez River runoff and is rising slowly.

Click here for the complete National Weather Service forecast.

Click here for the county Office of Emergency Services. Click here to sign up for the OES’ messaging service. Follow the OES on Facebook.

Noozhawk publisher Bill Macfadyen can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

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