Crews are working to re-grade and groom the Carpinteria City beach area with high-quality sediment over the next few weeks. | Credit: Courtesy City of Carpinteria website

Carpinteria city officials announced that crews are officially done clearing the debris basins following the January storm surge, and now the city is working to re-grade and groom the beach area with high-quality sediment over the next two weeks.

Santa Barbara County Flood Control removed 43,000 cubic yards of material from Santa Monica Basin, Gobernador Basin, Arroyo Paredon Basin, Toro Basin, Franklin Channel, and Santa Monica Channel, and the operation included frequent testing on sediment being transported to Carpinteria City Beach.

“The safety of our community is our priority,” said Carpinteria Parks & Recreation Director Matt Roberts. “From sediment testing to protecting properties, this storm response has been a collaborative effort with various city departments, Santa Barbara County Flood Control, and adjacent jurisdictions.”

With more storms due this weekend and in the next few weeks, Roberts said the beach’s winter berm is expected to remain in place longer than usual this year.

Sediment testing was handled by Ventura-based Fugro West Laboratory and Fruit Growers Laboratory in Santa Paula, while the Santa Barbara County Public Works Water Resources Division and Santa Barbara County Environmental Health Services Ocean Monitoring Program conducted frequent testing of the water quality throughout the operation.

“Test results indicated that all materials were environmentally safe for beach deposits,” said Carpinteria Emergency Services Program Manager Olivia Uribe-Mutal.

Over the next few weeks, crews will work to remove large pieces of woody debris that flowed down to the beach during the storms and will repair the area between Linden and Ash avenues.

Although branches and other larger pieces of debris are often left in place, Uribe-Mutal said that the city would be clearing the area to “protect swimmers from potentially dangerous floating debris” and reduce risks associated with structure building and illegal bonfires. 

“Typically, woody debris that arrives on the beach during winter storms is naturally swept back out to sea in the extreme tides of December, January, and February,” she said. “At this later point in the season, however, it is unlikely that the large logs and branches will be removed naturally.”

Further south down the coast past Linden Avenue, Carpinteria State Beach will be undergoing a similar debris cleanup handled by California State Parks.

For updates on the sediment deposition at Carpinteria City Beach, check the city website.


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