Hurricane-Force Winds Blast Santa Barbara!


Stab Magazine

Is California coming apart in front of our eyes? Bookending the summer: a landslide in Big Sur in June, and now August burns red, fires raging in Humboldt and Plumas National Forest, while thousands of firefighters battle the largest fire in Los Angeles history. And amidst all that fire and fury, yesterday Santa Barbara was blasted with what’s referred to as a Microburst—“a sudden downward burst of wind from the base of a thunderstorm. The air can rush towards the ground at speeds of 60 MPH before impacting the surface and spreading out in all directions. Winds at the surface can exceed 100 MPH in the strongest microbursts, often causing extensive tree and building damage.”

As beachgoers enjoyed the brief respite from triple-digit temps, the storm broadsided the lathered throngs and sent umbrellas and beach chairs, Sunday picnics, and E-Z Ups sailing, most unaware that The National Weather Service had issued a fairly last-minute flash flood warning for the county. 

The storm boasted hurricane force winds, with gusts over 80mph. It also tore the roof of poor Ryan Lovelace’s warehouse! Here’s how the scene unfolded, as captured by Lovelace’s partner in crime, Katie McLean, from their shared space: 

“The building has lost most of its roof and Katie’s office got the brunt of the water damage,” Lovelace posted. “There was flooding in my shaping room but nothing special was destroyed. we’ll learn more over the next few days…” Responding to the Instagram post, a small army descended on the space to lend a hand and help Lovelace and co. salvage whatever they could.

“From this window, I’ve watched my parents’ cars go underwater and dumpsters float down the street,” McLean wrote. “From this doorstep, I, ve been picked up in a dinghy to get to school in 1st grade. And now I can say: From this front porch, I’ve seen a dozen friends show up in minutes to help flip our remaining roof back on, carry buckets of water outside, and try to help me salvage any artwork.”

“Thank you’s going out the the crew this morning for scrambling to the shop so fast and helping with save what could be saved at the warehouse/Trim shop,” Lovelace wrote. “Bear with us as we tackle this little hiccup.” 

(C) 2017