National Weather Service forecasters say a storm approaching the Central and South Coasts is stronger than first predicted, and that’s prompting mandatory evacuation orders for some brush fire burn zones in Southern Santa Barbara County.
Mandatory evacuation orders will go into effect at eight p.m. Monday for designated high risk areas.
The county is using new evacuation protocols, so mandatory evacuations are now being more focused. On county maps, areas which are red, near waterways, are considered extremely high risk mandatory evacuation areas. Yellow areas on the updated map are considered high risk, under a recommended evacuation warning. Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown says while people in yellow areas don’t have to go, they should leave.
Meanwhile, the Ventura County Sheriff's Office ordered a voluntary evacuation for Matilija Canyon, and the North Fork area because of the storm.
The storm is expected to drop the heaviest rain on the South Coast between 7 a.m., and one p.m. Tuesday.
Meteorologists say the region could get 1.5” of rain total, but of bigger concern is the potential for up to .7” of rainfall an hour. They’ve issued a flash flood watch because of the concern of heavy, localized rainfall during a short period of time like during the 1/9 debris flow.
You can find maps of the evacuation zones in Santa Barbara County at readysbc.org, and in Ventura County at vcemergency.com