SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

Dredging in the Santa Barbara Harbor will get underway this weekend.

It's been nearly a year since the last dredging and sand is piling up, especially since the recent storm.

The Santa Barbara Harbor Patrol has been busy escorting boats in and out of the harbor. Some key passage areas are only 4 to 5 feet deep, when normally those areas are about 20 feet deep.

The dredge is electric and electrical lines need to be wired before it's operational. The dredge acts like a vacuum and sucks up excess sand, pushes it through a tube, then deposits the sand a mile and a half down the beach.  The dredging is expected to open up a safe passage to the harbor in about 3 to 5 days.