Fire breaks out at coffee shop
SANTA BARBARA — A small fire broke out at the Daily Grind, at 2001 De La Vina St., on Saturday afternoon, authorities said.
The fire was reported just before 5 p.m. in the rear of the building. An employee discovered the fire in the dryer area and smoke quickly filled up the back of the building, said Battalion Chief Jim McCoy, spokesman for the Santa Barbara City Fire Department.
Crews arrived on scene and quickly doused the fire. The fire caused just minor damage and was contained to the rear of the building.
No injuries were reported.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
— Mitchell White
Pavement project continues
SANTA BARBARA — Conduit installation work is continuing on portions of Santa Barbara Street as part of the FY20B Pavement Maintenance Project.
The work began Nov. 3, with the new underground conduit and wiring aimed at ensuring reliable traffic signal operations in the area. Most of the existing equipment is 50 to 60 years old and near the end of its service life, according to city officials.
Detours in the surrounding areas will be in effect to minimize construction duration and disruption to normal traffic flow. Traffic control and temporary delays should be expected along Santa Barbara Street and associated cross streets. Access will be maintained for residents and businesses, although temporary disruptions should be anticipated, especially while paving activities are taking place.
Road closures and detours are expected at the following dates and locations: Dec. 10 to 11, Santa Barbara and Anapamu streets; Dec. 16 to 18, Garden and Anapamu streets; and Jan. 4 to 6, Santa Barbara and Micheltorena streets.
No parking signs will be posted at least 72 hours prior to construction and detour signs will be in place. The city has contracted with Granite Construction, who is working on the project in conjunction with Earthbound Electric. The project is funded through Measure C.
— Mitchell White
Police to conduct DUI checkpoint
SANTA MARIA — The Santa Maria Police Department will conduct a DUI checkpoint from 6 p.m. Dec. 18 to 3 a.m. Dec. 19 at an undisclosed location within city limits.
Checkpoint locations are chosen based on a history of DUI-related crashes and arrests. The primary purpose of checkpoints is not to make arrests, but to promote public safety by deterring drivers from driving impaired, police said.
During the checkpoint, officers will look for signs that drivers are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
“The safety of our community is and always will be our mission,” Sgt. Michael McGehee said in a statement. “We are still out there in the middle of a pandemic because driving under the influence is still dangerous and puts a further strain on critical resources.”
The Santa Maria Police Department reminds the public that impaired driving is not just from alcohol. Some prescription medications or over-the-counter drugs may interfere with driving. Always follow directions for use and read warning labels about driving or “operating heavy machinery,” which includes driving a car. While medicinal and recreational marijuana are legal, driving under the influence of marijuana is illegal, police said.
Drivers charged with DUI face an average of $13,500 in fines and penalties, as well as a suspended license.
Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
— Mitchell White