Safety

Harbor entrance tightens up with big surge of sand

Urgent efforts to open it underway this week

Harbor dredging begins early to clear...

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The Santa Barbara Harbor Patrol is assisting boaters who are coming into and out of the main channel because of a recent surge of sand at the entrance.

Winter storms have clogged the normal opening.     

Buoys mark the deepest sections, and at low tide some boat owners are not able to move through, so they stay at the docks.

Waterfront Operations Facilities manager Karl Treiberg says  the problem began in recent weeks, and the massive storm about 10 days ago had a serious impact.

On board a Harbor Patrol boat  he said, "so as you can see this is how narrow the channel is between the red and the green can and that's about seven feet deep at low tide."  At that point the boat was very carefully going through the opening and electronic equipment was checking for the sandy bottom.

Treiberg  has been on the phone for several days with the Army Corps of Engineers about moving up the normal dredging schedule.

"They are responsible for all the dredging in the Santa Barbara Harbor so we reached out to them a month ago. We knew that (the last storm)  would be the straw that broke the camel's back, and it was," said Treiberg.

Dredging contracts have been approved.

Work begins Wednesday, although crews are doing some of the on shore hookups on West Beach already.

Funding requests are being formalized and Congressman Salud Carbajal (D) 24th District, has been asked to work with the Corps on the urgent needs of the harbor which is in his district. 


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