Evacuations ordered for Santa Barbara, Montecito burn areas ahead of powerful storm

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has ordered mandatory evacuation orders ahead of Tuesday’s storm, in what is becoming a usual announcement for South Coast burn areas.

According to a tweet from the Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Management, the Sheriff’s Office is requiring residents in the Thomas, Whittier and Sherpa fire burn areas to evacuate their homes by 4 p.m.

The region is expected to get a heavy dousing as a strong storm system sweeps through the Central Coast this week.

Much of Montecito is at risk of mudslides during that incoming storm system, according to a map published by the County Office of Emergency Management.

Several schools in the Montecito area are slated to temporarily close because of the evacuation orders, including Montecito Union Elementary School and Our Lady of Mount Carmel School.

Questions regarding the evacuation order can be directed to the Santa Barbara County Call Center at 833-688-5551.

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Kaytlyn Leslie writes about business and development for The San Luis Obispo Tribune. Hailing from Nipomo, she also covers city governments and happenings in the South County region, including Arroyo Grande, Pismo Beach and Grover Beach. She joined The Tribune in 2013 after graduating from Cal Poly with her journalism degree.