As of 6 a.m. Friday, Highway 101 is still open. The Santa Barbara CHP tweeted that officials are “closely monitoring the situation in case a closure becomes necessary.”
Highway 101 may close early Friday morning in Santa Barbara County due to the impending storm, the California Highway Patrol said Thursday.
The CHP’s Santa Barbara division said it would be monitoring the impacts of the storm to see whether or not the highway would need to be shut down.
If the CHP deems the closure necessary, the highway will close at about 2 a.m. Friday, according to a tweet sent out by the agency. “We will constantly monitor the situation and open the freeway as soon as possible,” the CHP said.
The impending storm, which is predicted to be heaviest from Thursday night into Friday morning, could cause minor to moderate debris flows through Thomas, Whittier and Sherpa fire burn areas, according to the National Weather Service.
On Thursday, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office issued storm-related mandatory evacuation orders for people in communities below the Thomas, Sherpa and Whittier fire burn areas.
In January, the Montecito mudslides caused Highway 101 to shut down for nearly two weeks.