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In the wake of the October 17, 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake, Caltrans commissioned an oral history project to document the personal and professional experiences of Caltrans employees who worked to restore the State's damaged transportation system. At the time of the interview, Jim Erickson was a Maintenance Superintendent at the Templeton Maintenance Yard in San Luis Obispo County for Caltrans. He was at home when the Loma Prieta earthquake happened. Later that evening, Erickson called his lead worker to ask if he had been contacted to go to work. Then Superintendent Harms called him and informed him that his crews should report to work at 6 A.M. the next day and to prepare to be away from home for a few days. The next morning Erickson assembled the crew that was going to travel to Santa Cruz and to assemble the equipment and fuel needed for the trip. On the way to Santa Cruz, the convoy reported to Salinas yard and then were guided to Santa Cruz due to the road closures. Erickson describes the earthquake damage he saw on the way to Santa Cruz. Once at the Caltrans Santa Cruz yard he had his lead workers secure hotel rooms and then the next day his crew was to work on Highway 17. In the interview, Erickson goes into detail of what he observed while working on Highway 17 and feeling aftershocks from the Loma Prieta earthquake.
Original Audio cassette
1 Tape of 1 00:22:00
California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) California Revealed is supported by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered in California by the State Librarian.