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Community members should go to ReadySBC.org for up-to-date information on evacuations and road closures.
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Serious Storm Approaching; Mandatory Evacuation Order Effective at Noon Tuesday for Areas of Extreme
and High Risk for Debris Flows

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office, in consultation with the National Weather Service and other public safety officials, has issued a Mandatory Evacuation Order effective tomorrow (Tuesday) at noon for individuals in all risk levels. This means that those in Extreme Risk and High Risk areas – red, yellow and grey areas on the Debris Flow Risk Map – near the Thomas, Sherpa and Whittier burn areas must be out of the evacuation areas by noon Tuesday.
Individuals in the Alamo burn area are in a Recommended Evacuation Warning area.

People with access and functional needs in the Extreme and High Risk areas should consider immediate evacuation. Owners of large animals and livestock should consider relocating immediately.

Updated meteorological models by the National Weather Service indicate that there is potential for rainfall intensity of between .5 to .75 inches per hour, which could trigger debris flows at any time during the storm. In addition, the storm is expected to bring between 5 and 10 inches of rain in the foothills and mountains, significantly more total rainfall than the 1/9 Debris Flow, which brought between 3 and 6 inches to the region.

Those in the Extreme and High Risks areas are required to evacuate at noon on Tuesday (March 20). To determine if a residence or business is in the evacuation area, consult the evacuation boundaries map at ReadySBC.org or call 2-1-1.

The Red Cross will open an evacuation center at Earl Warren Showgrounds, Warren Hall, 3400 Calle Real, Santa Barbara, CA 93105, at noon on Tuesday (March 20). Anyone evacuated or otherwise affected by the approaching storm is welcome to find relief and comfort at this location. For assistance evacuating large and small animals, contact Santa Barbara County Animal Services hotline at 805-681-4332.
According to the National Weather Service this storm is projected to have the heaviest rainfall and the longest duration of this winter storm season. All models indicate high confidence in rainfall totals and the duration of the storm.

According to Rob Lewin, director of the Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Management, the amount of rain and the intensity is enough to cause flooding even without the impact of the recent fires. “We could experience localized flooding and road closures which are not isolated to the burn areas. The threat of rock falls, mud slides and debris flow is high,” he noted.

The California Highway Patrol (CHP), the National Weather Service and public safety partners will monitor storm activity to ensure Highway 101 remains open to facilitate resident evacuations. If Highway 101 needs to be closed, CHP would do so just prior to the arrival of the intense portion of the storm. Bands of rain, timing, and intensity will guide this decision. Closure information will be communicated broadly to the public as decisions are made. Community members should go to ReadySBC.org for up-to-date information on evacuations and road closures.


Flood Watch
National Weather Service Los Angeles/Oxnard CA
3:23 PM PDT Mon Mar 19 2018


.A large and powerful storm system across the Eastern Pacific is expected to approach the West Coast through Friday. A subtropical fetch of moisture well ahead of the system is expected to bring periods of moderate to heavy rain to portions of Southwest California as early as Tuesday afternoon and continuing through late Thursday or early Friday. The most widespread moderate to heavy rain currently looks to be focused along and ahead of a cold front pushing through the region Wednesday night into Thursday. Flash flooding and mud and debris flows are likely in and around recent burn areas in the watch area. There is the potential that the Flash Flood Watch will need to be expanded to include areas outside of recent burn areas during the peak of the storm system
Wednesday night into Thursday. Rain will likely come to an end behind the cold front sometime late Thursday into early Friday. Storm total rainfall is expected to range from 2 to 5 inches across coastal and valley areas, with 5 to locally 10 inches across the foothills and coastal slopes.

San Luis Obispo County Central Coast-Santa Ynez Valley-
Santa Barbara County South Coast-Ventura County Coast-
Ventura County Interior Valleys-San Luis Obispo County Mountains-
Santa Barbara County Mountains-Ventura County Mountains-
Including the cities of San Luis Obispo, Pismo Beach, Morro Bay,
Cambria, San Simeon, Solvang, Santa Ynez, Santa Barbara,
Montecito, Carpinteria, Ventura, Oxnard, Camarillo, Santa Paula,
Fillmore, Ojai, Piru, Black Mountain, San Marcos Pass,
San Rafael Wilderness Area, Dick Smith Wilderness Area,
Lockwood Valley, and Mount Pinos
3:23 PM PDT Mon Mar 19 2018


The National Weather Service in Los Angeles/Oxnard has issued a Flash Flood Watch for recent burn areas across a portion of southwest California from late Tuesday afternoon through Thursday afternoon. Rainfall rates up to 0.6 inches per hour are possible late Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday morning with rates likely increasing to 0.75 inches per hour or higher at times Wednesday afternoon through Thursday afternoon. Rainfall of this intensity can produce dangerous mud and debris flows near recent burn areas.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…Flash flooding and debris flows will be a particular threat in and below the recently burned areas.

A flash flood watch means that conditions may develop that lead to flash flooding. Flash flooding is a very dangerous situation. Southern California residents, in or below the recently burned areas are urged to take the steps necessary to protect their property. Persons in the watch area should remain alert and
follow directions of emergency preparedness officials.

Hydrologic Outlook
National Weather Service Los Angeles/Oxnard CA
4:13 PM PDT Sun Mar 18 2018


A strong storm system originating from the Pacific Ocean will tap into a long fetch of deep subtropical moisture and bring the potential for a very wet and long duration storm event for Southwest California Tuesday through Thursday night. This atmospheric river event will likely bring the highest rainfall totals to some portions of Southwest California, so far this season. Preliminary storm total estimates range from 2.00 to 4.00 inches across coastal and valley areas, to between 4.00 and 6.00 inches across south and southwest facing foothills and mountains. Local amounts up to 8.00 inches cannot be ruled out along some south and southwest facing slopes.

A prolonged period of moderate to heavy rainfall could occur with this system, with the highest rainfall intensities expected to occur sometime between late Tuesday night and early Thursday. Rainfall rates will likely exceed USGS thresholds and bring a threat of significant flash flooding and mud and debris flows to
recent burn areas. These burn areas potentially include the Thomas, Whittier, Creek, and La Tuna burn scars. While there is some uncertainty in the positioning of heaviest rainfall with this system, areas under the heaviest rainfall are projected to see rainfall rates ranging between 0.50 and 0.75 inch per hour. Isolated rainfall rates as high as 1.00 inch per hour cannot be ruled, especially as storm system`s cold front approaches the area between Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

In addition to the flash flooding and mud and debris flow risk in recent burn areas, there will be other flooding threats in non- burn areas due to the long duration and intensity of this storm. Widespread urban roadway flooding is possible as well as rockslides and mudslides, especially near canyon roadways. As a
result, there could be significant travel delays and road closures across the region between Tuesday and Thursday night. Creeks and small streams could also be running and it is always advised to remain out of arroyos and barrancas.

As we draw closer to this event, Flash Flood Watches will likely need to be issued, especially for the recent burn areas. Pay close attention to the latest forecasts and updates on this storm system. Please follow instructions from your local emergency officials.

Fire Weather Planning Forecast for Southwestern California
National Weather Service Los Angeles/Oxnard CA
2:53 PM PDT Mon Mar 19 2018


DISCUSSION…A slowly moving low pressure system will stream sub-tropical moisture over the region Tuesday through Thursday, resulting in 36-48 hours of steady moderate to heavy rain. Rain rates between 0.25 and 0.50 inches per hour are possible anytime, but rates between 0.50 and 1.00 inches per hour is possible during the heaviest rain. Timing of the heaviest rain is still troublesome, but Wednesday afternoon  through Thursday morning has the best chance for those heavy rates,  with Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties most at risk. Such rates will result in debris flows to recent burn areas, including the Thomas
Fire, with significant and damaging debris flow possible. Storm  totals should generally range between 5 and 10 inches in the mountains and foothills, with 2 to 6 inches over coast and valleys. The upper end of the range should fall over San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and western Ventura Counties. Rainfall totals will be  significantly higher than the January 9th event, but one hour  rainfall rates should be slightly less. Gusty south winds are  expected at times as well, with gusts topping out in the 30 to 45 mph range mainly in the mountains and interior valleys.

A few showers will linger Thursday night into Friday. Gusty northwest winds are likely over the weekend, especially over southern Santa Barbara and northern Los Angeles Counties, with gusts in the 40 to 50 mph range possible. Widespread warming and drying conditions will  result early next week.

Sky/weather………Partly cloudy then becoming mostly cloudy.
Min temperature…..43-48 low elevations to 37-41 colder valleys and peaks.
24 hr trend……Up 6.
Max humidity……..60-75 percent except 80-100 percent colder valleys.
24 hr trend……Down 7.
20-foot winds…….
Valleys/lwr slopes…Variable 3-8 mph.
Ridges/upr slopes….South 6-12 mph with gusts to 20 mph.
Marine layer……..None.
CWR (>0.10 IN)……0 percent.

Sky/weather………Cloudy. Chance of rain, then rain likely in the afternoon.
Max temperature…..58-64 low elevations to 51-56 higher elevations.
24 hr trend……Down 3.
Min humidity……..45-65 percent except 30-45 percent higher peaks and warmer valleys.
24 hr trend……Up 19.
20-foot winds…….
Valleys/lwr slopes…South 6-12 mph becoming southeast 6-12 mph with gusts to 20 mph in the afternoon.
Ridges/upr slopes….South 6-12 mph with gusts to 20 mph becoming 8-15 mph with gusts to 25 mph in the afternoon.
Marine layer……..None.
CWR (>0.10 IN)……60 percent.

Sky/weather………Cloudy. Rain.
Min temperature…..45-50 low elevations to 39-43 colder valleys and peaks.
Max humidity……..80-100 percent.
20-foot winds…….
Valleys/lwr slopes…Southeast 8-15 mph with gusts to 25 mph.
Ridges/upr slopes….Southwest 10-20 mph with gusts to 30 mph.
CWR (>0.10 IN)……100 percent.

Sky/weather………Cloudy. Rain.
Max temperature…..57-62 low elevations to 51-55 higher elevations.
Min humidity……..75-85 percent.
20-foot winds…….
Valleys/lwr slopes…Southeast 8-15 mph with gusts to 25 mph.
Ridges/upr slopes….Southwest 10-20 mph with gusts to 30 mph becoming 15-25 mph with gusts to 35 mph in the afternoon.
CWR (>0.10 IN)……100 percent.


Sand bags are not pre-filled and persons are limited to 25 bags. More information concerning sand bags is available from County Flood Control at (805)568-3440. Click here for information on how to fill and place sandbags.

Santa Barbara Flood Control Shop  Map Icon
4568 County Rd (Off of Calle Real)
Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara Fire Station #31  Map Icon 
168 W Hwy 246


City of Carpinteria (Click here for more information)
5775 Carpinteria Ave. (City Hall)
805-684-5405 x-443

City of Goleta

6901 Frey Way

320 N. Los Carneros Rd.

Goleta Community Center
5679 Hollister Ave
(805) 967-1237


City of Santa Barbara (Click here for more information)
401 E. Yanonali St.
Santa Barbara



Montecito Fire Protection District (Click here for more information)
Lower Manning Park
449 San Ysidro Rd.

19 March 2018 20:45 hrs. MSW