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Capitola cleans up extensive bomb cyclone damage, braces for the next storms

Santa Cruz residents survey damage ahead of next arriving storms
Santa Cruz residents survey damage ahead of next arriving storms 02:17

CAPITOLA -- Crews continued to assess the extensive storm damage in Capitola Friday as residents and business owners braced for another round of rain starting this weekend.

Debris could be seen piled up in front of homes and businesses all over Santa Cruz County.

Capitola storm damage
Capitola storm damage CBS

The most notable damage was in Capitola village where the city's waterfront restaurants suffered extensive damage after huge swells destroyed parts of the boardwalk.

The city has declared a state of emergency.

It was a race against the clock Friday morning as crews cleaned up debris dumped ashore by this week's storms. 

Authorities on the Central Coast said they want to remove all the debris along the Santa Cruz Wharf before the next round rain and wind moves in Saturday.

"Nature took the beaches back," said Lauri Johnson, who came down to see the damage with her own eyes. "You can't control the ocean. The storm comes up and this is what happens." 

Steve Davis has lived here his whole life and rides his electric bike along the wharf. He said there was just as much damage up in the hills where he lives.

"Mud an inch high in the street," said Davis. "It came over the bridge. It's pretty impressive."

While locals and visitors alike walked the beaches, taking in the views and the damage, Santa Cruz work crews scrambled to get the logs moved off the beach in hopes of reducing the damage once the next round of stormy weather arrives Saturday.

Waterfront businesses in Capitola had to deal with water rushing into their building. My Thai Beach restaurant sustained heavy flooding damage. 

"Right now, it's about assessing all the damage and then just salvaging what we can," said My Thai Beach owner Dominick King. "It's difficult. It's a small family business. We just made it out of COVID. We were looking to revamp and reset and keep pushing through but then this is another setback."

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