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Storm aftermath response aims at debris cleanup, flooded streets and a stranded boat removal

Rain runoff SB Eastside
Rainfall over ran many drains on private property this week. (Photo: John Palminteri)
Rain run off
Rainfall over ran many drains on private property this week causing street flooding in some areas. (Photo: John Palminteri)
Debris removal
Rainfall caused street flooding and shredded trees on the South Coast this week. (Photo: John Palminteri)
Stranded boat
John Palminteri / KEYT

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Drains were gushing over at many locations in Santa Barbara County with the last shot of intense rain passing through Friday morning.

Some were loaded with debris from the hours of runoff that hit the area. The atmospheric river route went from north to south, stalling out at times and dumping five to 11 inches of rain in some areas.

Impressive numbers were recorded on rain gauges in Lompoc, Gaviota, Refugio and San Marcos Pass Thursday. Wednesday and in the overnight hours San Luis Obispo carried the heaviest load with rain gushing through areas including Avila Beach and Cambria.

Santa Barbara Public Works crews were up at dawn picking up tree limbs and trying to reopen drains.

The Santa Barbara Harbor Patrol has been assisting the owner of a fishing boat that was stranded on East Beach and lodged in the sand. The rescue was taking place at high tide with a rope line from vessel to vessel.

Caltrans worked throughout the night in problematic areas including the Ortega Hill on ramp and northbound Highway 101 just past Olive Mill Road where a drain failed and water overwhelmed the number two lane.

Street flooding was reported in the last 24 hours on Turnpike at Calle Real and Richland Drive in Santa Barbara.

A Santa Barbara Eastside resident, Dan  Steed was on a beach walk and said earlier this week his trip out was short and quick. "The wind was blowing and then it started hailing and then we went back to the car."

Hanging out with his two dogs Isabelle and Adrianna, Michael Quadrini said they had been cooped up. "They hate it.   They stay in . I put their rain jackets."

A surfer and golfer David Talley said "I haven't played golf or surfed in awhile and I wouldn't surf with the runoff and stuff like that." He referenced the wash out at Arroyo Burro creek. "It's dangerous for the ear infections."

With skies clearing, business owners can get a chance to enjoy the new changes in the COVID rules. "It's just too bad. Restaurants opened on Tuesday and then they get all this rain but  tonight will be great they will all be open."

On San Marcos Pass waterfalls came alive around Painted Cave Road. On Highway 154 Caltrans kept crews posted in case rocks and boulders came down from the saturated hills.

The Cave Fire zone held together well, more than a year after a significant fire in the area.

Down through the Montecito corridor, no major problems were reported linked to mudflows or debris in the Thomas Fire zone. Fortunately that area did not get the extreme rain that fell in Lompoc or San Luis Obispo County.

Article Topic Follows: Weather News

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John Palminteri

John Palminteri is senior reporter for KEYT News Channel 3-12. To learn more about John, click here.


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