NewsLocal News


A levee in Oceano broke Monday night causing significant flooding and displacing residents

Screen Shot 2023-01-10 at 11.05.25 PM.png
Posted at 12:37 AM, Jan 11, 2023

On a day where roads turned into rivers, sandbags were no match for the floodwaters on the Central Coast.

The North Beach Campground at Pismo Beach is mostly submerged as a result of heavy rain earlier this week.

“I can’t believe it. It’s all just totally flooded," said Jim Rushing, Pismo Beach resident.

“It’s pretty dramatic," said Karen Rushing, Pismo Beach resident.

Just down the road a levee in Oceano broke Monday night causing significant flooding.

“As I was leaving it was starting to kind of come up over the road a little bit so I knew my chances were a little bit slim at getting back, but definitely didn’t think it would be like this," said James Byers, Pacific Dunes resident.

The flooding is mostly impacting farmland but an estimated 200 people in the Pacific Dunes RV park are also stranded.

“It blew my mind. I was like what’s going on?” said Bryan Niven, Pacific Dunes resident.

Niven geared up to paddle across the floodwater with essential supplies before the sun set.

“My wife and my little girl are still up there. We’re trying to get a generator to them so that they can have some power for tonight,” said Niven.

The flooding also impacted a horse stable, upsetting the animals and making it difficult to rescue them from the flood waters.

“It was so stormy that a bunch of the horses got out and in fact right no there are still horses that are stuck out there," said Michael Barley, Pismo Beach resident.

Neighbors came together to help each other by purchasing inflatable rafts and paddling essentials back and forth.

“He’s just coming back from taking over a big old tank of propane so that they could have a refrigerator and whatever else they need it for,” said Barley.

Those who weren’t displaced are thankful.

“Glad it didn’t happen to my neighborhood,” said Barley.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office tells us those living in the RV park on the other side of this floodwater could be stranded for almost one week as they wait for the floodwater to go down, however they are planning to evacuate anyone who is willing to leave tomorrow accessing them through the side that backs up to the Oceano Dunes.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office says this evacuation is only for those who want to go and that it is not mandatory.

The Sheriff’s Office would like to remind residents that the flooded area remains closed to visitors and the evacuation order is still in effect.