Did anyone notice the rain this weekend? In Santa Barbara there was a lot of rain and one massive gust of wind called a microburst. The microburst was so strong it knocked down trees, ripped off a roof from a building in the Funk Zone, and injured a young woman who had to be airlifted to a hospital in Los Angeles. The Funk Zone flooded. Car windshields were shattered by falling objects and trees and debris was scattered up and down roadways.
Ever heard of a microburst before? I hadn’t. A microburst is a downdraft that moves in a way that is opposite to a tornado. Microbursts usually form in strong thunderstorms and can reach extremely high speeds. As you know, this is not at all a typical Santa Barbara occurrence. Here is what a few Santa Barbara Junior High School students experienced:
Anya McCue said “I was sitting outside with my sister and my Dad, and we start noticing it getting dark. It was really cloudy a few miles away. ‘It looks like it’s raining over there.’ my dad said. It started getting darker and darker, then the storm hit. It wasn’t strong at first, but then it started pouring. Suddenly the wind picked up, and I started getting blown backwards. It was really strong and the hammock was getting blown about and the palm tree was bending. But then the wind died almost immediately. My sister, my dad and I started dancing in the rain enjoying one of the only rainfalls Santa Barbara gets in the summer.”
Brooklyn Guron said, “On Sunday, September 3rd, as my family and I were on our way to my grandparents house, there was an emergency warning over the car radio. It said that in Eastern Santa Barbara County there would be heavy rain and flash floods. Almost immediately, we heard thunder booming from the mountains, but it hadn’t started raining yet. When we got to my grandparents house, we decided to go swimming. We were in the pool, when out of the blue, huge raindrops began pelting down on us. The wind knocked over an umbrella and made a book go flying. We jumped out of the pool, gathered all of the chair cushions and towels so they wouldn’t get soaked and ran for the house. My dog and my aunt’s dog started barking like crazy. Then we just watched it pour.
As you can see the microburst was pretty startling and unusual for Santa Barbara. It’s certainly nothing I’ve experienced. Overall the microburst was strange weather for Santa Barbara.