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Crews planning ahead for the next storm as rain moves out of the Central Coast

Posted at 6:24 PM, Jan 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-29 22:47:31-05

Several Central Coast fire departments and the County of San Luis Obispo attribute advanced planning to this week's storm response.

With this storm subsiding, clean up crews are now planning for the days ahead.

Paso Robles Fire Battalion Chief Randy Harris says his department is shifting some of its efforts to storm clean-up.

"We are anticipating that water levels will reduce a little bit. Basically, with all the ground runoff, we will still have water running in the Salinas River probably for several weeks or months to come," Harris said.

Northern San Luis Obispo County was hit especially hard, leading to fallen trees and downed power lines.

In the weeks ahead, mudslides and debris flows will be some of the things the Paso Robles Fire Department will be looking out for.

"We anticipate with the wet soils we might have some anticipated closures on South and North River Roads with some rock roll-outs, stuff like that from kind of saturated and unstable soils," Harris said.

San Luis Obispo County Public Works will also be on the lookout and following up on sites that experienced issues.

"Now that the ground is saturated, we are just concerned about that runoff coming off much quicker at higher volumes," said SLO County Public Works Utilities Division Manager Mark Chiaramonte.

Some residents say they will have to effort their own clean-ups following the storm.

"Our fence [had] blown over, blown into the pool, our whole front yard [was] just dismantled with tree branches and a bunch of stuff. It was just all over the place," said Atascadero resident Alexa Setting.

Battalion Chief Harris says now is a good time to evaluate trees around your home.

"Just make sure that you are aware of tree hazards right now because it really doesn't take much for trees to topple over."

Fire crews also advise that people do not approach downed power lines and should call 911 if they see one.

SLO County Public Works also recommends keeping plenty of back up power like additional flashlights and candles handy in the weeks ahead.