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Central, South coasts brace for wet, rainy day

Posted at 8:07 AM, Jan 15, 2019

People across the Central Coast are bracing for another wet and rainy day.

Starting at 8 a.m. and continuing throughout the day, a flash flood watch is in effect for the Whittier, Sherpa and Thomas Fire burn areas in Santa Barbara County, along with the Hill Fire burn area in Ventura County.

Periods of very heavy rain are expected to develop Tuesday morning and continue through this evening as another strong storm system moves into the area.

Isolated thunderstorms are possible in the area Tuesday afternoon and evening. Winds advisories have also been issued in both San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties until 1:15 p.m.

The California Highway Patrol says Highway 101 will remain open unless there is a danger to public safety.

Due to the threat of flash flooding and debris flows, Santa Barbara County officials have issued evacuation orders for the Thomas, Sherpa and Whittier fire burn areas.

Those orders go into effect at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 15, and apply to the “Debris Flow Risk Areas” identified in the county’s updated flood risk map.

The south coast of Santa Babara County could receive between two and four inches of rain as a result of the storm with San Luis Obispo County expecting anywhere from one to three inches.

County officials are encouraging residents to pack up and leave the area before 10 a.m. They add that people living adjacent to the evacuation areas should be aware that they could become trapped if roads are damaged or impassable in the event of a significant debris flow.

Brooke Martell KSBY is in Montecito this morning and has the latest on weather conditions.

Posted by KSBY on Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Twenty-one Santa Maria firefighters are heading to Montecito Tuesday morning to provide mutual aid ahead of the storm.

A Red Cross Evacuation Center will be set up at Goleta Valley Community Center, located at 5679 Hollister Ave. in Goleta.

People needing assistance evacuating animals can call 805-681-4332. The Santa Barbara Humane Society can house cats and dogs, and Santa Barbara County Animal Services will take in other types of small animals. Large animals can be taken to the Earl Warren Showgrounds.

El Montecito Pre-School and Crane Country Day School will be closed on Tuesday, and Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Montecito Union School, and Laguna Blanca Lower School will conduct classes at alternate sites.