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March 25, 2023

Another storm expected to slam Central Coast

With sunshine interspersed with scattered showers expected to last through Monday, another storm anticipated to hit the Central Coast early Tuesday will bring up to eight inches in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and at least three inches to the rest of Santa Cruz County.

The approaching storm has residents on edge as additional flooding remains a distinct possibility.

“Now is your time to prepare,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Cindy Palmer. “We encourage everyone to listen to emergency management officials if you live in an evacuation zone.”

The additional rains will add more water to the Pajaro area, which is suffering a major flood after the Pajaro River Levee breached early Saturday morning, inundating neighborhoods and agricultural fields and forcing thousands to flee their homes.

All streams and rivers are likely to rise and are at risk of reaching flood stage, Palmer said.

The Pajaro River was at 23.2 feet Monday, but is expected to reach 27.6 feet as a result of the storm, she said. 

The San Lorenzo River is predicted to spike to roughly 18 feet, well over the 16.5-foot flood stage.

Additionally, the County is under a high wind warning from 11pm Monday through 5am on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Highway 1 remains closed from Salinas Road to Highway 129 (Riverside Drive) due to the flooding.

There is no estimated time for reopening, the California Department of Transportation (CalTrans) stated in a press release. 

Drivers are urged to avoid travel in the area. Travelers may take Highway 156 or 129 east to U.S. 101 to travel around the Highway 1 closure.


 To monitor state highways, visit

 To monitor roads in Monterey County, visit

Traffic backs up on southbound Highway 1 at Riverside Drive in Watsonville after officials shut down the highway at the Pajaro River. Photo: Tarmo Hannula/The Pajaronian


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