Wrightwood Making Great Progress in Historic Storm Recovery Efforts
March 01, 2023
After a nearly week of back-to-back storms that dumped more than 5-7 feet of snow in Wrightwood, the community is making great progress in its recovery efforts. Here is an update:
Public Works/County Roads
San Bernardino County Public Works and Caltrans District 8 crews have been working 24/7 to clear the roads, and safety is their No. 1 priority.
As of Friday morning, Wrightwood’s primary and secondary roads were 100% passable. "Passable" means that there is less than 8 inches of snow on the road which can be navigated by 4WD/AWD vehicles with chains.
“Now that the storm has stopped, we can start widening the roads in Wrightwood,” said Brendon Biggs, Director of San Bernardino County’s Department of Public Works.
Public Works used a variety of equipment to clear Wrightwood's 39 miles of County-maintained roads, including one loader, four graders, two plow trucks and two snow blowers. The department will continue removing debris, plowing and cindering as needed. They have also launched an interactive, web-based map showing current snow removal statuses.
As Public Works continues its widening efforts this weekend, they are urging residents to mark their snow-buried vehicles with a pole or flag so that their plow drivers can avoid obstructions.
Additionally, CR&R will resume normal trash services in Wrightwood this coming week, March 6-10, for all roads that are deemed safe.
Caltrans confirmed this morning that Highway 2 and Big Pines Highway will remain closed to the public through at least Monday as the community recovers from the historic amounts of snow that fell last week. Proof of residency is required at the CHP checkpoints.
A checkpoint will stay in place near Lone Pine Canyon to prevent snow players from visiting the mountain as recovery efforts continue. The department understands that this may negatively impact businesses who rely on tourist visits, but they do not want to compromise lifeline routes and community safety.
Since the storm hit, there have been 24 calls for service and 2 reports taken by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department in Wrightwood.
“I want to reassure our mountain residents that law enforcement services are continuing and deputies are responding to citizens in need,” said Sheriff Shannon Dicus.
On Wednesday, Governor Newsom proclaimed a state of emergency to support disaster response in San Bernardino County. This has allowed the County to receive additional resources to address emergency management needs and accelerate snow removal.
San Bernardino County Fire Chief Daniel Munsey said that one of these resources includes the "Rattlesnake Crew."
"This hand crew is a combination of Cal Fire and California National Guard members," Munsey said during today's press conference. "The state has given us this hand crew so they can help us go door-to-door and clear residences, remove snow from roofs, and shovel the front porches to make sure that our residents are safe. You will not see the National Guard wearing fatigues. They’re not going to be driving military vehicles. They are dressed like any other firefighter with blue uniforms. They are men and women with shovels who can go to individual properties and help."
Many essential suppliers — including Sysco — were able to deliver truckloads of food to Wrightwood’s restaurants yesterday. This morning, Jensen’s Market received a full truckload of deliveries including firewood, water and bread, which were previously out of stock.
Several resources are available for Wrightwood residents affected by the recent storms.
- A press conference was held today to provide an update on the County’s storm response. Watch the video.
- Individuals who have been unable to return home may access the emergency shelter located at Redlands East Valley High School, 31000 E. Colton Ave. in Redlands.
- The County is operating a special 24-hour hotline for mountain residents at 909-387-3911 to answer questions and provide resources.
- The County has opened a toll-free hotline for calls related to property damage, building permits and related questions at 800-722-4542.
- The County's Mental Health 24-Hour Helpline is available at (888) 743-1478.
Those with urgent medical issues should continue to call 911.