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Daytime highs heat up, fire weather watch issued for Santa Barbara County

teri milne hunter - pismo beach.jfif
Posted at 5:06 AM, Jan 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-14 10:00:23-05

It is going to be a warm end to the week as an upper-level high strengthens over the west and offshore flow develops.

Around 3 a.m., winds across San Luis Obispo were gusty and shifting out of the northeast, ranging from 13-51 miles per hour. The windy conditions will last through at least the morning drive before the winds are expected to shift out of the northwest. The afternoon hours will include plenty of sunshine and heat. Daytime highs at the coast and across most inland valleys will be in the mid to upper 70s. Across the Santa Ynez Valley and coastal valleys, expect even warmer daytime highs to reach the 80s Thursday. Expect these hot conditions to linger through the weekend.

A fire weather watch has been issued for Southern California and includes the south coast region in Santa Barbara County. The watch will go into effect Friday as north to northeast winds continue to strengthen and sundowner winds become very prominent over the mountains and foothills. With consistently dry fuels coupled with heat, winds potentially up to 50 miles per hour, and humidity levels below 15 percent, if a fire occurs, extreme fire behavior could also be a possibility.

At the coast, a high surf advisory will remain in place for west-facing beaches across San Luis Obispo and northern Santa Barbara Counties. Breaking waves are expected to range from eight to 12 feet with another round of northwesterly swells for the weekend ahead.