One day opening, Friday 1/6 from 8 am to 5 pm

Date:Thursday, January 5, 2023, at 8:30 pm
District:05 – Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, San Benito, and Santa Cruz Counties
Contact:Kevin Drabinski or Jim Shivers
Phone:(805) 549-3138      (805) 549-3237





MONTEREY / SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTIES – Caltrans maintenance and engineering teams completed initial assessments of Highway 1 after the atmospheric river events over the last two days.

Due to the latest storm, a slide has occurred on Highway 1 in San Luis Obispo County approximately a mile south of Ragged Point. The slide will likely result in closure of Highway 1 at this location for several weeks to months depending on the weather. This location is referred to as Polar Star.

Ragged Point is effectively cut off from access from the south due to the Polar Star slide.

The southern closure of Highway 1 will remain at the elephant seal viewing area, approximately 10 miles south of Ragged Point and four miles north of San Simeon.

The northern limit for the Highway 1 closure remains just south of Deetjen’s Big Sur Inn in Monterey County.

Caltrans maintenance teams were able to clean up several slides in the roadway north of Ragged Point. Inspections will take place tomorrow morning at daybreak throughout the closure limits of Highway 1 to determine if it is safe to travel within the closure.

If the assessment is favorable, Highway 1 is scheduled to reopen between Ragged Point and Deetjen’s, on Friday Jan. 6, from 8 am to 5 pm. This opening is timed to take advantage of a forecasted break in the rain.

The express intent of this daylight reopening of Highway 1, to accommodate those community members who need to get out of the closure area a chance to head north and leave the closure.

It is also intended for local community members within the closure area to resupply themselves in preparation for an extended closure of Highway 1. Additionally, community members may wish to take advantage of this opening to leave the area ahead of anticipated storms.

Once Highway 1 closes between Ragged Point and Deetjen’s, on Friday Jan. 6 at 5 pm, that closure is expected to remain in effect for the next 10 days in anticipation of more rain and potential damage to the roadway. Caltrans will be looking for opportunities during this period to reopen the road during breaks in the weather as long as roadway conditions allow for safe travel.

Also, the gates at Paul’s Slide (PM 22) will be closed and locked day and night for the duration of this closure for public safety. Crews from Chavez Construction will continue to work removing debris from the catchment area at Paul’s Slide ahead of the next storm.

Caltrans has also entered into a $750,000 emergency contract with Souza Construction for repairs at Polar Star. The contractor is mobilizing, and assessments are ongoing.

Road information and updates can also be found on Caltrans District 5 Social Media platforms: Twitter at: @CaltransD5, Facebook at: Caltrans Central Coast (District 5) and Instagram at: Caltrans_D5.

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