Hwy 1 Big Sur closure boundaries moved

Clay Curtis
February 2, 2021

A section of California's Highway 1 in Monterey County was swept off to sea after intense rain storms this week. The washout occurred near Rat Creek about 15 miles south of Big Sur, according to Caltrans, which added that Highway 1 is open from Carmel to the town of Big Sur.

Caltrans officials say landslide repairs will keep Highway 1 south of Big Sur closed for months, rewriting travel plans for anyone who had been hoping to make a coastal road trip in early spring.

The view of Highway 1 on Friday, after a chunk of the roadway collapsed into the Pacific Ocean.

The Big Sur coastline is no stranger to mudslides and one occurrence in 2017 closed a portion of the road for over a year.

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Drone video of the highway shows a huge chasm and both northbound and southbound lanes missing.

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 fix that stretch".

The debris flow was first discovered on Thursday afternoon by Caltrans crews. It's unclear how long the fix could take and the road will remain closed in the meantime. "This is a pretty typical slip out here", Gafill said. In a statement to NBC, they said, "If you are coming from the south you can not travel to northern California".

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