Flash Flood Warning in Montecito

Flash Flood Warning in Montecito title=
Flash Flood Warning in Montecito
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Flooded Carrillo Underpass during last month's storm (Photo: SBPD)

Update by the National Weather Service
9:30 p.m., March 5, 2019

Flash Flood Warning. Thomas Fire Burn Area in south SB County until 10:30PM (March 5, 2019). If you are in the debris flow risk area, get to high ground immediately!

Advertencia de inundacion repentina. cerca área quemada por el incendio Thomas en el condado de Santa Barbara. Vaya a terreno elevado inmediatamente

Update by the National Weather Service


The Flash Flood Watch is now in effect for

* The Thomas, Sherpa, and Whittier burn scars of Santa Barbara

* From 6 PM PST this evening through Wednesday morning

* Peak rain rates of 0.50 to 0.80 inches per hour will be possible with locally higher rates in thunderstorms of up to an inch per hour along with heavy 15 and 30 minute bursts of rainfall.

* Shallow mud and debris flows will be likely in recent burn scars with a slight chance of locally damaging debris flows. In addition, roadway flooding is likely, especially in low lying areas, along with rock and mudslides on canyon roads and below steep terrain.


Flash flooding and debris flows will be a particular threat in and below the recently burned areas.

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.

Update by Santa Barbara County Fire Department

Flash Flooding/Debris Flow/Increased Staffing

The National Weather Service (NWS) predicts that a storm arriving today and continuing through Wednesday morning could have rainfall in the range of .5 to .8 inches of rain per hour with the possibilities of thunderstorms. The NWS informed the County that moderate to heavy rainfall rates Tuesday night into Wednesday morning may be enough to generate isolated mud and debris flows near the Whittier, Sherpa and Thomas burn areas.

Increased Staffing Duration: 4pm on Tuesday, March 5, 2019 to 12pm on Wednesday, March 6, 2019

In response to the predicted flooding and debris flow danger, the Santa Barbara County Fire Department, along with other operational area fire departments including Santa Barbara, Montecito, Carpinteria/Summerland, Santa Maria, Lompoc and Vandenberg AFB, will increase their staffing levels. The increased staffing level will include the Santa Barbara County XSB Incident Management Team, along with additional fire engines, bulldozers, excavators, helicopters, hand crews, an urban search and rescue team, swift water rescue team and five National Guard high water vehicles. The additional resources will be available to respond throughout the Santa Barbara County operational area.

Funding for the increased staffing and equipment is provided through the State Office of Emergency Services (CalOES).

Source: City of Santa Barbara

Know the Different Types of Flood Warnings

A Flood Advisory is issued when a specific weather event is forecasted, but is not expected to be bad enough to issue a warning. However, it may cause significant inconvenience and, if caution is not exercised, it could lead to situations that may threaten life and/or property.

A Flood Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for a specific hazardous weather event to occur. When conditions are favorable for flooding. It does not mean flooding will occur, but it is possible. This is the time to begin thinking about safety and if you need to evacuate.

Flash Flood Warning is issued when a flash flood is imminent or occurring. If you are in a flood prone area move immediately to high ground. A flash flood is a sudden violent flood that can take from minutes to hours to develop. It is even possible to experience a flash flood in areas not immediately receiving rain. Lastly, if you don’t have flood insurance, get it now because it takes 30 days for the insurance to kick in.

Remember to be Ready by having a plan, get Set by knowing when to evacuation and Go by making sure you are registered for alerts at www.readysbc.org

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