STORM SAFETY SEASON: Precipitation on the Horizon 


As California faces wet weather in many areas statewide, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) continues to monitor the storm patterns around the clock for potential impacts and is ready to deploy teams as requested. 

An active weather pattern, or atmospheric river, may develop with moderate to heavy rainfall. Visit the National Weather Service for current weather patterns in your area.  

Cal OES wants to remind all residents and communities that it is essential to stay safe during increased rainfall. Storm season can bring unpredictable and severe weather conditions, so stay informed, have an emergency plan in place and follow the guidance of local authorities to navigate the challenges that may arise during these weather events. Proactive efforts now can make a significant difference when it comes to dealing with winter storm related rains and potential flooding.  


While California is celebrated for its many different landscapes, each area comes with its own risk. Where you live will depend on the types of disasters in your area and will affect your emergency plan, evacuation route or shelter-in-place preparations. Assess your local risk HERE.   


Free emergency alerts from county or local officials can provide real-time notifications about life-saving information. Signing up for these free alerts will notify the community about potential disasters, dangers and emergencies and what to do to stay safe. Find local emergency alerts in your community HERE.   


Stay updated with the latest weather forecasts and storm predictions provided by reliable sources such as the National Weather Service, your local news, local or state emergency services and local authorities. Monitoring these sources will help you understand the potential risks and timing of storm-related rainfall in your area.  


Take measures to safeguard your property against potential rain damage. Secure and cover outdoor items such as lawn furniture, grills and umbrellas. Clear gutters and downspouts of debris to ensure proper drainage. Identify and fix any possible leaks or drainage issues. Also, consider installing sump pumps and other flood prevention measures like sandbags.  


Ensure your family and community have emergency preparedness plans in place. This includes creating either a Go-Bag or Stay Box with essential items such as non-perishable food, water, flashlights, batteries and a first-aid kit. Make sure your family is aware of evacuation routes and shelter locations if flooding becomes a significant concern. Establish a family communication plan in case family members are separated during an emergency. Designate a meeting point and ensure everyone has a way to stay in contact, such as cell phones or two-way radios.   


Know and practice emergency evacuation routes. Practice emergency drills with your family and community to ensure that everyone knows what to do in case of a flood or other disaster. Regular drills can help reduce panic and increase the efficiency of your response. As a part of your drills, make sure your vehicle(s) are maintained and are prepared with an emergency kit in the event you are informed to evacuate.  


Severe weather conditions can create power outages. Sign up for local alerts with your utility company to stay informed about possible power outages and public safety power shutoffs in your area. For those who are at high risk and require power for medical needs, contact your local utility providers for the medical baseline program which offers early notifications of possible shutoffs giving residents time to adjust their emergency plans. Generators can also be helpful when the power goes out. Generators should be used properly, like using them outdoors and keeping them dry and protected from the elements.   


If you have pets, make sure to include them in your disaster preparedness plan. Have pet carriers, food, water and medications ready for their needs. Identify pet-friendly shelters in your area.  


Compile a list of important emergency contacts, including local authorities, emergency services and utility companies. Share this information with family members and neighbors so that everyone knows who to contact in case of an emergency.  


After assessing your local risks, review your insurance coverage. Ensure that you have the correct coverage for your property’s risk. Standard homeowner’s insurance may not always include floods, fires, tsunamis or earthquakes.   


Emergency Alerts  

Listos California Disaster Ready Guide  

Tips for Staying Safe in Severe Storms  

Power Outage Tips  

Generator Safety  

Food Safety in a Power Outage