Preparing for Rainy Weather
Heavy rainfall can cause property damage even in the midst of a drought. Are you prepared?
BEFORE It Rains
When rain storms are predicted, all Brea residents, particularly those in canyon areas or next to potentially unstable slopes, are urged to prepare immediately and maintain preparedness standards.
To supplement basic supplies that homeowners should already have on hand, additional supplies of sandbags usually become available through hardware/gardening retailers during periods of rainy weather. (Please call store in advance to check on supplies.)
As a safety precaution and service to the public, Brea Public Works will stock extra sandbags during heavy rain events and provide up to 10 bags per address 24/7, while supplies last. Prepare to show your proof of residency, as required at the maintenance yard located at 545 North Berry Street or at any of the city's fire stations.
Securing Your Property
Residential rain preparations should include clearing debris from gutters, downspouts and low areas in yards or patios that could cause water back-ups. Prevent runoff pollution into streets and storm drains by collecting any trash or landscape clippings from your property into their designated disposal containers. Secure outdoor furniture, equipment, or toys and be sure pets have safe cover.
Prepping Your House
Take preventative measures now before the rain arrives and create a family action plan. Inspect your property for potential hazards and fix any past problem areas. Slopes, roof repairs, and places where water tends to accumulate are all areas posing potential hazards if there is extended rain. Purchase plastic sheeting and sandbags for your landscape while stores have supplies. While the city’s Maintenance and Fire Departments keep a limited number of sandbags on hand for emergencies, a major rain incident quickly depletes their supply.
DURING Stormy Days
Avoid driving during heavy downpours. Brea has experienced minor flooding on city streets, residential mud run-off, brownouts as well as repeated closure and significant damage along Carbon Canyon Road (State Highway 142) which accesses Olinda Village and Chino Hills. This road is particularly prone to problems during heavy rain - if not from the storm directly, then also from resulting mudslides, loose rocks, and car accidents. If you live in Carbon Canyon or use it to commute, it is especially important that you have an emergency plan in place. Consider detours to regular destinations; identify a relative or neighbor that can help with children and animals if you are delayed getting home; and keep a list of important phone numbers (list below) so that you can stay informed.
Steps to Take
- Place trash bins 8 - 10 inches out from the curb to allow for water flows. Please remove empty bins from the street as soon as possible after pick up. Empty bins can blow over or block storm drains.
- Because Carbon Canyon Road is a state highway, California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) maintains jurisdiction over this roadway. However, to protect public safety, multiple agencies including Brea Police and San Bernardino Sheriffs are authorized to close the roadway as necessary during incidents.
- Typical closure points are at County Line Road in Chino Hills and at Santa Fe Road in Brea. When closures do occur, they are undoubtedly inconvenient, but rest assured they are only employed when necessary to protect public safety. Because multiple agencies are involved and conditions do change rapidly, immediate, detailed information is often very difficult to obtain.
- To help streamline procedures and improve emergency communication, Brea officials have worked with representatives from the City of Chino Hills, the San Bernardino Sheriffs, and Caltrans. All agencies are committed to public safety and delivering important public information during emergency situations.
- Register for AlertOC to be notified quickly of major local area emergencies.
Resources In Case of Emergency
Without a doubt, pre-planning, staying informed and plenty of patience will help you when storms hit. Use the following information as reference in case of an emergency:
- Brea Olinda Unified School District - Call for school site instructions
- Caltrans Transportation Hotline - On-duty staff available Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- City of Brea Emergency Infoline - Updated during various incidents as information becomes available
- City of Brea’s Non-Emergency / Routine PD Business Line - To report incidents in the city that need assistance, but are not life threatening
- City Field Condition Hotline - Updated as weather conditions change
- Sig Alert - Sigalert.com provides current information on major traffic problems
- California Department of Transportation - The California Department of Transportation website, under “Commuter Alert”, provides information on scheduled road work which may result in closures
As always, call 9-1-1 in the event of a life threatening emergency.
AFTER Rain Emergencies
Should water or mud damage occur on private property, the owner must get in touch with their insurance company for referrals to approved remediation services. Those who may wish to contract for assistance can find commercial vendors listed under Water Damage in the yellow pages. Be sure to determine that the company is licensed to do this work.