Damage from Friday’s storm in Carmel Valley

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Most of the images above were taken on Valle Vista Drive in Carmel Valley.  Friday’s South winds at 4 AM hit the North side of Carmel Valley pretty hard.  The last shot is of the current water level at Rosie’s Bridge.

There are many landslides along Carmel Valley Road, specifically at Scarlett Road, that are causing problems.  The slide between Sleepy Hollow and Los Tulares is also being cleared again. The road is scheduled to reopen at 4 pm.

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Additional photos above are from Laureles Grade, Tularcitos, Ford Road, El Caminito, and Lower Circle.

Letter from Martha Karstens, BSVFB

Information from Chief Karstens, Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade.

February 18, 2017

Dear Big Sur residents,

Last Saturday February 11th, I became aware of some concerns about the possibility of one of our bridges being damaged and the land beneath it cracking.  I went down to investigate and with State Parks and Cal Trans saw the damage first hand at the Sycamore canyon bridge.  Within a few hours the word was out that maybe people should get north of the bridge if at all possible. That was followed by a hard closure in the early evening. Cal Trans arrived on Sunday February 12th to look at the integrity of the structure and the decision was made to allow traffic out only through the closure until 4:00 PM.  Pedestrian traffic and emergency vehicles were allowed after that until the geo techs could look at the bridge on Monday.

The closure stayed in place with pedestrian traffic and emergency vehicles only until we got the confirmation early on Wednesday February 15th that for a few hours vehicles would be allowed to cross depending on the integrity of the bridge which they constantly monitored.  This crossing, which included things like propane and service trucks, was allowed to continue until 5:00 PM Wednesday.

To this date, Saturday morning, there has been a hard closure, not even foot traffic allowed and after talking to Cal Trans I do not expect that to change.  CHP is in place to handle traffic control.

The Fire Brigade and OES are actively working with the State Park and private land owners to try and identify the possibility of putting in a trail around the bridge.  Our plan is to look at the State park area on Tuesday when hopefully the rain stops.

The Fire Brigade has had our response area broken up right now into about four separate areas.  Loosely defined as the area south of Limekiln, the Lucia/Hermitage area between Big Ck. and Pauls’ slide, the area south of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge and the area north of the bridge.  With the rainy weather these areas can change.  The Lucia area has been shut in already for about 8 days.

For emergency concerns, first of all, as usual, call 911.  There are some USFS personnel in the area south of Limekiln at the Pacific Valley station; I have, off and on, a medical Fire Brigade member in the Lucia/Hermitage area.  Our fire house is in the area south of the bridge with a number of Fire Brigade members, and we have moved an engine and a medical/rescue squad to the USFS Big Sur station on the north side.  I have several members on the north side of the Bridge as well.  AMR, the ambulance crew, is at their quarters at our fire house at the Post Ranch and my goal is to have them remain there throughout this incident.

In some of the isolated areas the best way out for a medical emergency will be a helicopter.  (You may want to sign up for the AirMedCare (formally CalStar) membership if that ends up being the helo that flies you out).  In the event it is not possible to fly you out we will do what it takes to get you out, it may be that we have to carry you out by stretcher.  We do have an emergency route planned for the folks in the area just south of the bridge if need be.  This underlines the importance of having anyone who does not live here to leave.  The more people there are in the affected area the more possibility there is for an emergency.  If anyone has any medical concerns they might consider evacuating.  This is not the time for nonresidents to have an adventure.  They are a liability and are using up precious resources.

An  emergency proclamation has been declared for our area.  The Fire Brigade has been working with the Chamber of Commerce, (Kirk), OES and several other agencies from the onset to make sure the needs of everyone in their isolated areas are met.  We had two conference calls yesterday afternoon to further discuss the situation.

Also the Sheriff’s department has two vehicles on the south side of the bridge if need be.

This is just one more challenge Mother Nature has given to all of us down here, and hopefully we will all get through it safely.  Please feel free to call me with any questions or concern.

Martha Karstens
Chief

Helicopter service in Big Sur, 2/19/17

Hello Everyone,

Today February 19, 2017   Flights out only

The Fire Brigade in conjunction with State Parks has arranged for the opportunity for three helicopter flights out today only.

People on the south side of the bridge may go to Post Ranch to fly out and will be landed at the State Park ball field.  You will need to make your own arrangements to get north from there.

You will need to either have a ride to both landing zones, or plan to park your car on Highway One.  No cars may be left inside the State Park or the Post Ranch property.
To access the ball field you may drive out the day use road like you would normally do.

This will be until noon weather permitting or until we reach the three flight limit.  The Helicopter service is the same one that ferried people out during the Rocky Creek closure, Specialized Helicopter Service.

To the best of my knowledge PG&E may not be able to get access to the south side until Wednesday to work on the power.

The cost is $50 a seat with 3 seats available.  Payment can be worked out.

No hazardous materials, gas etc
Contact number for questions:  Ken 610-299-8110

Martha Karstens
Chief

Gas Available South of Pfeiffer Bridge, 2/19/17

Hello Everyone,

For those of you located south of the Pfeiffer Bridge, gas will be available at the Loma Vista gas station from 10:00AM to 12:00PM today.

Note:  They will be closed Monday, but available again Tuesday from 10-12.

The station may be open on a daily basis during these hours depending on weather and power.  We will issue daily notices as conditions may change.  If you have an emergency and need to know if the station is open, call the following cell phone number 1-661-301-7213 and ask to speak to Mike.  This phone may have spotty service (as cell phones do in Big Sur) and works only when power is on.

Animation of Sunday’s (2/19/17) expected storm from 6 PM Sunday to 6 PM Monday

 

7 pm update:  Updated animation showing the expected storm from 6 PM Sunday to 6 PM Monday.

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Animation images provided by www.ventusky.com

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From NWS BayArea: Widespread flooding and mudslides possible Sun-Mon.

HWY. 1 Closure Update – 2/19/17

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Photo of just north of Salmon Creek (PM 3) FROM YESTERDAY.

Closure Continues from Ragged Pt. (SLO PM 72.87) to Pfeiffer Cyn Bridge (PM 45.5)

*LOCALS MAY TRAVEL DURING Daytime Hours Only, AFTER 10am BETWEEN RAGGED PT. AND LIMEKILN (PM 21)

*IMPORTANT NOTE TO LOCALS: SEVERAL DAYS OF RAIN ARE ANTICIPATED TO CONTINUE THROUGH NEXT WEDNESDAY, FEB. 22. DUE TO SAFETY PRECAUTIONS, PFEIFFER CANYON BRIDGE WILL REMAIN FULLY CLOSED, INCLUDING TO PEDESTRIAN AND EMERGENCY SERVICES. THE NEXT BRIDGE INSPECTION WILL BE MADE EITHER ON TUESDAY, FEB. 21 OR WEDNESDAY, FEB. 22,  AFTER THE RAIN, BUT IT IS NOT LIKELY THE BRIDGE WILL RE-OPEN.

*BUSINESSES REMAIN OPEN*

Another update regarding the Highway 1 Big Sur Coast will be provided around mid-morning tomorrow, Monday, Feb. 20.

NOTE: For information on emergency services for the Big Sur Coast, you may contact Gerry Malais, Mon. Co. OES via email at: malaisg@co.monterey.ca.us or Maia Carroll, Mon. Co. OES PIO at carrollm@co.monterey.ca.us or via phone at (831) 796-3092.

Susana Z. Cruz

Caltrans District 5

Acting Manager

Public Information Office