News

Actions

Southern Santa Barbara County should get bulk of this storm’s moisture

Posted at 4:42 PM, Mar 05, 2019

The “atmospheric river” storm currently arriving on the Central Coast will continue to deliver rain and scattered thunderstorms into Wednesday morning. There will be lingering shower activity through Thursday and a stray shower or two can’t be ruled out Friday.

This is the reason why this forecast is garnering attention…storm looks well supplied on the water vapor satellite image and you can see the close proximity.

Posted by Dave Hovde-KSBY on Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Update 10:48pm: The primary concern will not only be rain potential but also rain rates across Santa Barbara County where an evacuation order is in place for the potential for debris flows in recent burn areas.  A flash flood watch is in place into 7am Wednesday for those burn areas.  Additionally the watch area has also seen a flash flood warning for a few hours when some heavy pockets of rain and thunderstorms rolled through.  The warning was allowed to expire but additional warnings could be issued if heavy rains re-develop.

Generally .50-1.5″ of rain accumulation is possible across San Luis Obispo County through early Friday. For Santa Barbara County, 1-3″ additional rain for the coast with totals up to 5″ are possible on south-facing slopes at higher elevations.  Already some areas have exceeded the 1″ forecast.

Not only will the area deal with that potential but also the possibility of thunderstorms.

The Storm Prediction Center has highlighted our area with a chance for thunderstorm development later today into Wednesday.

Posted by Dave Hovde-KSBY on Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Rain rates of .50-.80″ per hour should develop at times and could occasionally exceed 1″ rates which are all enough water to potentially cause debris flows in recent burn areas.

The primary hours of concern for the South Coast are from now to about 4 a.m.

This is the reason why this forecast is garnering attention…storm looks well supplied on the water vapor satellite image and you can see the close proximity.

Posted by Dave Hovde-KSBY on Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Rainfall should decrease across Santa Barbara County just after sunrise, at which time the threat of flash flooding in the recent burn areas there should also subside.

Given the high rainfall amounts in a 6-12 hour period, we`ll have to keep an eye on the main stem rivers, namely Santa Ynez, and the Sisquoc Rivers. Current California-Nevada River Forecast Center forecasts have them reaching monitor stages but not flood stage.

Finally, winds will be the other possible impact with this system. South and southwest winds should pick up 20-30 mph with gusts as high as 40-50 mph and wind advisories have been posted for most of the area relating to that.

A little bit of a change in the deeper extended forecast – the weekend looks dry but an anticipated rain system Monday looks to be minor if it impacts the area at all.

Morro Bay Skies by Karen Smilanich Oothoudt