Saturday’s showers caused storm-related troubles across Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.
Calls poured in to emergency dispatchers of fallen trees, rain-related car-crashes, mudslides and flooding.
Forecasters were predicting substantial rain throughout the night Saturday and early today in Santa Barbara County, and even heavier downfall in the northern part of San Luis Obispo County.
In the 24-hour period ending at 4 p.m. Saturday, Santa Maria received .18 inches of rain, Lompoc had .28 inches, Santa Ynez received
.36 inches and Pismo Beach was showered with .55 inches, according to the National Weather Service.
The rain along the Central Coast prompted the National Weather Service to issue a hazardous weather outlook.
Despite the weather issues, Brian Hayden, an engineer with the Santa Barbara County Fire Department, said early Saturday evening that no one had suffered any major injuries in any of the vehicle accident calls to which county firefighters responded.
“There’s been several weather-related accidents,” he said, noting the weather had been severe.
Hayden encouraged drivers to slow down, as they have reduced visibility in stormy weather and vehicles can hydroplane in only a couple inches of water while traveling as low as 50 or 60 mph.
“You lose traction,” Hayden explained.
In reference to incidents of trees falling, he said the ground becomes saturated with water after a few days of rain, making a tree’s roots vulnerable to breaking through the ground when a bit of wind hits.
The National Weather Service issued a flood advisory Saturday evening for Santa Barbara County and southeastern San Luis Obispo County due to substantial showers. The advisory was only expected to last a couple hours, and a wind advisory issued for the region was not predicted to last much longer.
Forecasters cautioned against driving a vehicle into areas in which water covers the roadway.
“Just one foot of flowing water is powerful enough to sweep vehicles off the road,” National Weather Service forecasters wrote.
“When encountering flooded roads, make the smart choice ... turn around ... don’t drown.”
Today, the storm should be calming down with rain making its way out of the area.
The National Weather Service has predicted a 50-percent chance of rain today in Santa Maria and Lompoc, with an expected high temperature of 60 degrees in Santa Maria and 59 in Lompoc.
Tonight should only dip to 43 degrees in Santa Maria and Lompoc, and a 20-percent chance of rain is forecast in the evening for the area.
Monday, mostly sunny skies are predicted across the Central Coast and the trend should last through the week, bringing warmer temperatures reaching into the low 70s.
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