During Friday afternoon’s conference call and until this evening, the northern closure of SR-1 in the Big Sur area was located at the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge, MPM 45.5. Effective immediately, the northern closure of SR-1 is being moved from the Pfeiffer Bridge to the Point Sur Lighthouse, MPM 54. This new location is being established based on continued inclement weather causing numerous, hazardous, active debris flows now extending for several miles north of the Pfeiffer Bridge creating a threat to public safety along SR-1. I’ve directed California Highway Patrol personnel to SR-1 at the Point Sur Lighthouse to man the new closure and provide appropriate law enforcement/public services until further notice. CalTrans will respond and assess the new debris flows and highway conditions during daylight hours on Tuesday, February 21. I apologize for any inconvenience this new closure may cause you, your staff and constituents. For current highway conditions in Monterey County, please refer to http://www.dot.ca.gov/dist05/road_information.htm You may also call 1-800-427-7623 for current highway conditions or find more information about roads, traffic and travel. My CHP 911 Communications may also be contacted anytime at (831) 796-2160.
Robert (Robb) Kaczor, Lieutenant
California Highway Patrol
From Susana Cruz at the DOT:
(RE: SIG ALERT-HWY 1 CLOSED) : SR-1 FULL CLOSURE MOVED SOUTH–RAGGED PT (SLO PM 72.87) TO JNO PT. SUR FACILITY (MON PM 54.5) AS OF 7PM. THIS INCLUDES LOCAL ACCESS.
Caltrans Willow Springs reported excessive rain at Mud Creek and Big Sur Maintenance reported 20-30 slides between Pfeiffer Bridge and the Crab Lab. Be Safe.
*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, Tuesday, Feb. 21.
The following is the information for flights out of Big Sur for the residents in the area:
Thank you for all your calls to organize your flights in and out of Big Sur. Below is the information for you to directly contact the company for your needs. We have permission from Post Ranch to use their LZ but we still need to secure a LZ on the north side. As mentioned before, the ball field will probably not be an option due to the condition of the day use road since the fire. It will most likely be at Andrew Molera with State Parks permission. The cost for the short hop between the PR LZ and Andrew Molera or wherever we set up the LZ will hopefully be quite reasonable. Maybe a shuttle could be arranged back and forth.
Post Ranch LZ to Monterey Regional Airport will be $780. The helicopter seats up to three people, however there is no separate baggage compartment, so bag space is limited with all three seats filled (essentially whatever fits in each passenger’s lap, weight permitting). As of right now, flights will be flown as requests come in. We will do our best to line up multiple flights in order to amortize the ferry costs across all parties, which will in turn lower the total cost for each customer. Please contact Specialized Helicopters at (831) 763-2244 with any additional questions or to book a flight.
Also, we will be utilizing the facebook page, Big Sur Information to disseminate information on flights, open seats, price updates, landing locations, etc.
Update from Specialized Helicopters:
Specialized Helicopters will be providing flights in and out of Big Sur tomorrow, (Wednesday) from 8am to about noon or as needed. The only 2 authorized locations at this point are Monterey airport and Post Ranch Inn. So please plan your route from one of this locations to the other for now. The more seats we fill each way with persons or supplies the lower the per seat cost. Currently it is about $780 for us to fly round trip from Watsonville to Post Ranch Inn and back to Monterey. We are trying to keep the costs down for all involved and that takes coordination. So please be flexible if you can so we can accommodate as many as possible at the best possible price. Please call our office starting at 9am to coordinate a flight. We have several morning flights booked and have 1 or 2 seats to fill. (831) 763-2244
AMR is flying in two people and supplies on one flight and a second flight is flying in a water tech so there are two seats available to fly in on that flight. If the helicopter is full the price can be around $130/leg. I know there are homeowners trying to get back to their homes and there may be other unique needs and we are trying to accommodate these needs. We are still working on getting a landing zone closer to the north side of the bridge to bring the shuttle flight cost down to move people north over the bridge but at this point Highway 1 is closed at Granite Creek Bridge (PM 65) which puts it at Garrapata State Park.
You cannot leave your vehicle at Post Ranch Inn so if you are flying out you’ll need to make plans to be dropped off.
Animation of expected wind from 4 PM to 8 AM. Images provided by www.ventusky.com
Monterey County Office of Emergency Services – 3:09 pm
A mandatory evacuation order has been given for residents who may be affected by flooding on the Carmel River.
The Carmel River is expected to hit flood stage beginning at 4 pm today and peak beginning at 8 pm tonight. Those affected are asked to leave as quickly as feasible. Areas that may be impacted by flooding include all low-lying areas adjacent to the entire stem of the river from the Los Padres Dam to Mission Fields.
The Red Cross has established an evacuation center at Carmel Middle School, 4389 Carmel Valley Road. The SPCA of Monterey County will be on hand to assist evacuees with their companion animals, please call the SPCA if you have large animals that need to be removed 831-373-2631.
Call 211 or text 898-211 “windstorm” for additional information.
The River is expected to reach flood stage of 8.5 feet this afternoon and to continue to rise to nearly 10.4 feet by late tonight.
At 8.5 feet…Low lying homes from Camp Steffani to below Robles del Rio will begin to flood. Old Odello Ranch near Carmel begins to flood. Homes along Paso Hondo and Dampierre Park are subject to flooding.
At 10.0 feet…South side of Highway 1 bridge access becomes inundated and impassable. Many low lying homes threatened along the entire Carmel River. Low lying homes near Camp Steffani experience substantial flooding and homes near Schulte Road in danger of flooding. Homes surrounding the Carmel Lagoon area are in danger of flooding.
At 11.0 feet…Hacienda Carmel residential development levee is threatened. Moderate flooding of golf courses and low lying homes
along the entire Carmel River can be expected. Homes in the Carmel Lagoon area begin to experience moderate flooding.
Robles Del Rio gauge here.
Online Fire scanner can be found here.
Pictures below were taken at 2 pm from Rosie’s Bridge.
Clear Ridge, above McLeod’s. Photos by Seth Quinones
Current condition (photo by Jen Smith via Facebook):
Slide north of Hurricane Point covering both lanes, another near Soberanes Point. Trees and power lines down at Fernwood. Mud Creek is very active again, and then there are all those in between. Highway closed to ALL from Ragged Point to Fernwood earlier, but now extended to Crab Lab. Full Closure to everyone between.
Got word that Esalen is planning a massive evac of 60 by helicopter when there is a break in the weather. Cannot confirm as their land lines and Satellite Internet are both down.