On Tuesday, January 10, the County of Santa Cruz began emergency levee repairs along the Pajaro River in Watsonville, Calif. The Pajaro drains a massive watershed that reaches into Santa Clara and San Benito counties, and with several days of intense storms coupled with runoff from overtopped reservoirs in southern Santa Clara County, the Pajaro was approaching flood stage.
The aging levee abuts the economically disadvantaged community of Pajaro and parts of Watsonville, protecting many low-income and farmworker neighborhoods from flooding. The County and partners Graniterock and technical advisers Haro Kasunich and Pacific Crest Engineering worked through the night to shore up the levee, with oversight from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the state Department of Water Resources. The County thanks our partners for helping to successfully protect these communities and our fertile agricultural fields, both of which contribute to America’s bounty.