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Erosion continues along Pismo Beach coastline after storms

Pismo Beach faces erosion after storms
Posted at 6:50 PM, Jan 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-25 00:02:21-05

Recent storms and large waves are causing parts of the Pismo Beach coastline to erode.

“The surf has been really high. It's been hitting up on the cliffs and just like slowly wreaking havoc along this coast. There's been a lot of debris in the water from the storms,” said Shell Beach resident Ocean Billings.

City crews continue to assess the erosion.

“Those assessments started before the storms and then subsequently after, and as storms continue to evolve, as the King Tides have rolled in, we've seen some additional damage. So right now, our total estimate for public infrastructure is about $17 million worth of damage,” said Assistant City Manager Jorge Garcia.

“Oh, my gosh. There's a lot of erosion. So I've been out biking around quite a bit or just walking along, checking out, you know, now we have two benches here in Shell Beach that are precariously hanging on,” said Dana Davis, a cyclist who lives in Shell Beach.

Two benches along the coastline are roped off for public safety.

The city does not anticipate replacing the bench at Margo Dodd Park in the same location. As for the bench at Eldwayen Ocean Park, depending on the erosion, it also may not be replaced.

“It's kind of sad to see it like this, to be honest with you. You know, because, I mean, this is such an awesome place to come to, especially on a beautiful day like this, you know? But I know that after the rains that we've had, you know, you're going to see something of Mother Nature,” said Sylvia Athie, Santa Maria resident.

The city recommends people who own private property along the coastline get their seawalls and coastal areas inspected.

We reached out to PG&E and were told two poles along the cliff edge were removed in Pismo Beach due to erosion concerns. Once the ground settles, they will be reinstalled.