A stretch of Highway 1 near Big Sur in California that collapsed this week because of a winter storm will need millions of dollars in repairs.
The collapse happened Thursday about 15 miles south of Big Sur, officials told the Los Angeles Times.
The report continued:
Caltrans earlier closed 40 miles of Highway 1 between Fullers Lookout and the San Luis Obispo County line after a winter storm threatened mudslides near the Dolan Fire burn scar, officials said. The wildfire last fall burned over 128,000 acres, destroying vegetation and causing the soil to weaken.
The San Francisco Chronicle posted aerial footage of the washed out highway online Friday, showing emergency crews at the scene:
Caltrans District 5 tweeted additional drone footage, writing, “Our crews are on site securing it, assessing damage & starting clean-up/ repairs. Reminder: the road is OPEN from #Carmel thru town of Big Sur”:
Check out this amazing drone video of #Hwy1 washout at Rat Creek about 15 miles south of #BigSur. Our crews are on site securing it, assessing damage & starting clean-up/ repairs. Reminder: the road is OPEN from #Carmel thru town of Big Sur. @bigsurkate @BigSurCC @CHP_Coastal pic.twitter.com/rB193DzXhL
— Caltrans District 5 (@CaltransD5) January 29, 2021
Caltrans spokesperson Jim Shivers said the damage is referred to as a slip out, noting that “It’s where we lose a part of the highway and now we’re facing a project to clean and repair that stretch.”
“This is the only location we’re aware of where this happened in the storm. Our maintenance team is patrolling the highway now to look for other damage,” he told SFGate.com.
The Big Sur coastline is no stranger to mudslides and one occurrence in 2017 closed a portion of the road for over a year.
“Anyone familiar with the history of Highway 1 knows that once we get into the rain season, slides of various degrees, slip outs, rock slides is what we face and what we know will happen,” Shivers explained.
Caltrans maintenance crews came upon the section of collapsed highway around 4:00 p.m. Thursday and issued an emergency contract with Papich Construction, Shivers told the Times.
“The company will work under Caltrans engineers to ensure the repair is up to state standards, Shivers said. There is no timetable for the project’s completion,” the article concluded.