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Community steps up to help with storm cleanup in Morro Bay

The clean up on Main Street in Morro Bay
Posted at 5:11 PM, Jan 18, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-18 22:27:35-05

In Morro Bay, residents and small business owners are still trying to clean up the mountains of mud and debris left behind when creeks overflowed during a heavy storm on Monday, Jan. 9.

On Wednesday, the city shut down part of Main Street to allow for storm cleanup.

“It's been nine days and I would love to not have to wear rubber boots anymore," said Jeff Babb, owner of Central Coast Cart Rentals. "At least we're starting to see some blacktop.”

City crews, business owners, and volunteers continue to clear away debris after the storms.

Pam Boies lives in Morro Bay and is a cleanup volunteer, alongside her husband.

“We saw on the City of Morro Bay Facebook page they were calling for volunteers to come help clean up, so we thought we'd come over and see what we could do, and we shoveled mud for two hours," she said.

Business owners say they have a long road ahead of them.

“I'm sure I'm going to lose 150 grand, maybe 200 grand after this, you know, maybe more. And that's just basically putting the businesses back in order to be able to rent the properties again,” said Rob Fraser who owns three properties in Morro Bay.

“These are small business people. They just need help on things like this,” said Ed Boies.

But help from their neighbors makes a huge difference.

“I had friends over here the day of the flood and they're good guys. So the next thing I'm going to do is throw a party, have barbecues, say thank you,” Fraser said.

"I can't thank my friends enough that just showed up. When people show up and you don't, they don't owe you anything that says a lot,” Babb added.

The Main Street closure is expected to continue from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. every day through Friday. The road is closed between the Highway 1 northbound ramps and Errol Street.

Residents and businesses in the closure area will be allowed access to their properties during the closure.

Officials with the City of Morro Bay say while they expect to re-open Main Street by the weekend, they acknowledge that recovery efforts will take months or even years for many residents.

Anyone interested in volunteering to help during the cleanup may contact the Silver City Mobile Home Park at (805) 772-7478 or (209) 402-0775; or business owner Rob Fraser at (805) 459-1456.