For the eighth time in 18 months, a panga boat that apparently was used to smuggle drugs has been abandoned on a San Luis Obispo County beach.
This time, a fixed-wing California Highway Patrol aircraft made the discovery at about 9:24 a.m. on a beach about 1.5 miles north of the Cayucos pier, according to the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Department.
Cal Fire, State Park rangers, and sheriff's patrol and detective personnel responded and took the 45-foot open boat to Morro Bay for further investigation. No drugs were found but evidence pointed to the boat being used to move narcotics, according to a news release. Fifteen fuel containers were found on the boat.
Since May 2012, eight pangas - open boats used for fishing in Mexico - have found their way to the county shoreline as smugglers apparently extend their routes for moving contraband.