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Tractor-Trailer Jackknifes Near Gaviota Tunnel


A tractor-trailer heading northbound on Highway 101 jackknifed just north of the Gaviota Tunnel about 9 a.m., blocking the left lane and coming to rest partially in the Gaviota Creek.


Santa Barbara County — A tractor-trailer heading northbound on Highway 101 jackknifed just north of the Gaviota Tunnel about 9 a.m., blocking the left lane and coming to rest partially in the Gaviota Creek.

The right lane is open, according to Don Clotworthy of the California Highway Patrol Public Affairs Office, however, intermittent closures are expected to occur as crews handle the blockage of the left lane. Route 154 is not recommended as an alternate route as the heavy rains heighten the risks of rock- and mudslides. Motorists are advised to expect delays.


Without A Landline? Sheriff’s Dept. Invites You To Add Cell Number To Emergency Notification List

The Sheriff’s Department is inviting people without a land-line to add their cell phone numbers to a data base – referred to as a “reverse 9-1-1 system”—that the department could use to call residents during emergency events.

Participation is voluntary, and residents’ information will not be shared for any other purpose. For those who already have land-line phone service provided by Verizon, there is no need to fill out the form, unless they live in a very rural location.

To participate, go to www.sbsheriff.org.

“It is also important to remember that no single system or technology is perfect; completion of this form cannot guarantee that you will receive timely notification in the event of a large scale community emergency, due to the unforeseen problems that such an emergency could create,” said Sgt. Alex Tipolt, the department’s spokesman, in a press release. “Should such a situation arrive, it is important that the public continue to monitor other public safety warning systems such as radio and television sources. In addition, it is important to remember to avoid calling 9-1-1 unnecessarily.”

Chemical Leak Detected in Las Flores Creek - updated 5:05 p.m.

Santa Barbara County — Santa Barbara County Fire and Hazmat personnel responded to a leak of sulfolane into Las Flores Creek near El Capitan Canyon from the Exxon-owned Popco Oil and Gas Facility this morning about 2:30.

Approximately 100 gallons of the low toxicity and low flammability material, used to purify natural gas, is estimated to have leaked into the creek, which is now active because of the rain. The leak has been stopped and regulatory agencies, like the Department of Fish and Game and County Petroleum Division and others, have been notified.

The cause of the leak is an apparent mechanical malfunction of a gasket on an extractor unit.

Popco technicians have been sampling the creek south of the facilities to determine how far the material traveled. Las Flores Creek merges with Corral Creek and despite the closure of a weir gate in Corral Creek to contain the flow of contaminated water, runoff and the solubility of the substance in water allowed some of the material to run to the ocean

No hydrogen sulfide gas has been detected. No employees or firefighters were injured. Operations have resumed after the gasket where the leak occured was isolated.

Paving Closes Part of Hwy. 101

Santa Maria — The southbound No. 1 (fast lane) on Highway 101 will be closed from Stowell Road to Main Street (Highway 166) for until 3 p.m. today for paving.


The majority of work on this project has been performed during the overnight hours, but this paving operation requires warmer daytime conditions.  Motorists can expect a delay not to exceed ten minutes.

This paving operation is part of the $30 million Santa Maria six-lane widening project that is now 50-percent complete.  This project is expected to be complete by the end of 2008.  The new Main Street and Jones Street bridges have already been completed.  Work is continuing on the widening of the Santa Maria Way overcrossing.

Caltrans reminds motorists that "we’re here to get you there."


For updates on this project, motorists can call Caltrans District 5 Public Affairs at 805-549-3318 or 888-SB ROADS for regular updates on the project.  Motorists may also visit the Caltrans Web site at: www.dot.ca.gov/dist/05/main/road/upsb.htm.

Hwy. 46 Closures Cancelled

San Luis Obispo County — Caltrans has announced the cancellation of a closure on Highway 46 East, 3½ miles west of the San Luis Obispo/Kern County Line scheduled for today. The closure is due to winter storms moving through the area.

This work on the Antelope Grade has been rescheduled for Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will include removing loose and unstable rocks from slopes that are prone to rockslides, especially during the winter rainy season.

These intermittent complete closures of the highway will result in traffic delays of up to 30 minutes.  Message signs will be posted in advance to advise motorists who may use Highways 41 and 33 as an alternate route.

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