National

Dec 18, 2009 9:05 AM by Associated Press

California apartments evacuated as cliff crumbles

Authorities are monitoring two buildings along a crumbling Northern California coastal bluff. The buildings in Pacifica are just a stone's throw from an apartment building that was evacuated earlier amid fears it would slide into the Pacific.

Apartment residents were ordered out Thursday as large chunks of cliff plunged into the ocean, leaving the 12-unit building just 10 feet from the edge of the wave-battered 50-foot bluff.

The erosion of the bluff's sandy soils is a natural occurrence exacerbated by the region's wet winters. Officials had been monitoring the buildings since recent heavy rains.

It's hoped the completion of a wave-deflecting barrier of boulders at the bottom of the bluff will halt the erosion and allow residents to return to their apartments.

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