Carmel prepares for predicted deluge

Forecasted heavy rainfall is spurring residents to action in order to avoid a repeat of previous flood damage.

Laura Wells, a Mission Fields resident, recalls the heavy flooding of 1995 and ‘97-’98.

“[Our] neighborhood flooded on two different occasions… people had to evacuate in the middle of the night,” Wells remembers. “The next few days people were rowing down Rio Road in rowboats. Homes along the Carmel River in Carmel Valley also flooded. The bridge on Highway 1 just south of Rio Road washed away.”

Our predicted rainy season threatens to mimic the 1998 El Niño year.

Proactive residents along the Carmel River are taking steps to combat upcoming weather threats.

Chris Regan, a resident of the Boronda Road neighborhood in Carmel Valley, is looking ahead.

“Our community is very concerned,” Regan says. “Most of us live along the river, and there is only one bridge. We have had a community meeting with water resources, the department of public health and the former fire chief.”

Her neighborhood called upon local Boy Scout Troop 127 to fill sandbags. The last day of October, scouts filled over 800 sandbags. The teens delivered the bags to 30 Boronda residences.

Both Wells and Regan are gathering essential supplies in case the rains come down and the floods come up emergently.

In addition to stockpiling sandbags, Regan is making strategic practical investments.

“[W]e are purchasing a generator, and we are getting items to assist in a disaster, like a radio, candles, water, food and other resources,” she explains.

Clearly, Carmelites believe that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

–Connor Suess