Transportation

Highway 101 is covered in mud, so Santa Barbara borrows Sacramento passenger trains

This photo provided by the Santa Barbara County Fire Department shows the U.S. Highway 101 at the Olive Mill Road overpass flooded with runoff water from Montecito Creek on Tuesday in Montecito. Dozens of homes were swept away or heavily damaged as downpours sent mud and boulders roaring down hills stripped of vegetation by a gigantic wildfire that raged in Southern California last month. (Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department via AP)
This photo provided by the Santa Barbara County Fire Department shows the U.S. Highway 101 at the Olive Mill Road overpass flooded with runoff water from Montecito Creek on Tuesday in Montecito. Dozens of homes were swept away or heavily damaged as downpours sent mud and boulders roaring down hills stripped of vegetation by a gigantic wildfire that raged in Southern California last month. (Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire Department via AP) AP

Capitol Corridor train officials in Sacramento and the Bay Area are warning riders that fewer trains will be running on local routes this week, leading to possible crowding.

That’s because several locomotives and passenger cars were shipped Saturday to Southern California to help train officials there handle a sudden influx of riders in the mud-damaged areas around Santa Barbara.

Last week’s massive mudslides covered Highway 101, the main travel corridor on the coast between Santa Barbara, Ventura and Los Angeles, forcing closure of the coastal highway for what may be a week.

Southern California’s Pacific Surfliner agency called local and state officials for help Friday night after having to leave some riders behind on train platforms.

“It was definitely something we needed to do to help a sister agency that’s bursting at the seams,” said David Kutrosky, Capitol Corridor managing director.

The three locomotives and eight passenger cars will supplement service through Friday and return to Northern California next weekend, Kutrosky said.

Capitol Corridor board member Lucas Frerichs, a Davis City Council member, said his agency is happy to lend a hand.

“It’s heartening for us to be able to help with the disaster relief efforts in such a tangible way,” Frerichs said.

Pacific Surfliner officials tweeted service alerts Friday and Saturday saying more cars will be added, but noted numerous delays.

A Hummer H3 and unknown model Honda sit on the beach mangled feet just from the Pacific Ocean after being carried down Montecito Creek following heavy rain early Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018.

Tony Bizjak: 916-321-1059, @TonyBizjak

  Comments