The system that forecasters have been talking about for a week now is arriving on the Central Coast Tuesday morning.
The Atmospheric River (AR) is first taking aim at San Luis Obispo County through 11:00 a.m., shifting between southern and northern SLO County, before moving over Santa Barbara County’s south coast later around 6:00 p.m.
Weather models are indicating heavy rainfall will begin for the area right around 4:00 p.m. in southern SLO County before moving south to the south coast throughout Tuesday night. Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Management issued an evacuation order that will go into effect at 4:00 p.m. Tuesday for residents living in and around the Thomas, Whittier, Sherpa burn areas as a result of the heavier rain that is expected.
EVACUATION ORDER: The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has issued an EVACUATION ORDER due to a strong storm arriving tomorrow. Those in the Thomas/Whittier/Sherpa burn areas are ordered to evacuate by 4 pm tomorrow (5 March). See the evacuation map @ https://t.co/YqDKvUfZIM
— SBCountyOEM (@SBCountyOEM) March 5, 2019
Weather models show the rain should taper off Wednesday evening and scattered shower activity will take over Thursday and Friday. Rainfall totals are still expected to reach 1’’-3’’ for the coastal valleys and beaches, while the foothills and mountains have potential to reach 3’’-5’’.
Winds will crank up Tuesday with gusts that could reach 40 miles per hour, possibly higher along the north coast in SLO County. A wind advisory was issued Tuesday morning for San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties that will remain in place through 8:00 a.m. Wednesday.