Local Residents Brace For Powerful Storm


Yesterday, local residences scrambled to prepare for the arrival of the Bay Area’s biggest winter storm in 10 years. Residences have been busy cleaning raincutters, sandbagging driveways and doing last minute grocery shopping in preparation for the storm.  The powerful storm is expected to blast the Bay Area today with bursts of rain and gusts of wind up to 70 mph.

The National Weather Service has issued a Flash Flood Watch in effect from this evening through late Thursday night. A High Wind Warning is in effect  until 10 p.m. Thursday. The National Weather Service has also issued a High Surf Advisory for coastal areas in effect from 10 p.m. tonight until 10 am. Friday.

The storm prompted Oakland school district followed by San Francisco, Berkeley & Alameda school districts to close schools. San Lorenzo Valley schools in the Santa Cruz Mountains also will close.


The Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff is providing information on sandbags for the unincorporated areas. Residents must provide their own shovel and transportation. Sand and bags are available at:

Bay Point – Ambrose Recreation & Park Center —3105 Willow Pass Road, Bay Point. West side of the parking lot next to one of the trees approximately ¾ of the way back to the playing fields. Sandbags are cached in a container on site at the sand cradle.

Oakley – Senior Center, 215 Second Street, Oakley. Materials are located at the south end of the parking lot beside a large tree adjacent to the Office of the Sheriff Delta Station.

Pacheco – County Public Works, 2475 Waterbird Way, Pacheco. Sandbags are cached in a container on site at the sand cradle.

Walnut Creek – Howe Homestead, 2950 Walnut Boulevard, Walnut Creek. Materials are located in the parking lot.

Here’s a couple of quick tips to keep in mind with this storm coming:

  • Expect delays traveling to or from SF by air. The SFO airport website reports that flights will likely be delayed due to “weather and low ceilings.”
  • Often storms like this one lead to mass power outages. Make sure you have a supply of candles and test your flashlights tonight to see if the batteries are fresh.
  • SF Public Works tweeted that the Great Highway will be closed from 10 p.m. tonight to 10 p.m. tomorrow.
  •  There is a high surf advisory through Friday, issued by the National Weather Service. The agency warns of swells up to 15 to 20 feet, a high threat of sneaker waves (these are waves that appear to come
  • out of nowhere), and strong currents. The Environmental Protection Agency cautions people not to visit the beach during rainstorms or immediately after, as sewer run-off can make the water contaminated with bacteria.
  • In light of the predicted deluge the Northern California Family Dog Rescue is looking for temporary foster parents for some of their outside dogs. You can volunteer by emailing adopt@norcalfamilydogrescue.org and do your part to keep a shelter pup warm and dry. And if you have pets of your own, make sure to keep them inside or at least within a covered area during the storm.

Today’s traffic will be wet with delays. Drive safe and plan ahead so there’s no rushing. You can receive updates on the storm at #bayareastorm


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