Weather Alerts and Preparedness Information

Hazardous Weather Outlook and Storm Advisory Information for February 15-21, 2017

The National Weather Service has issued two advisories: a HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK and a HYDROLOGIC OUTLOOK for our region, running from Wednesday, February 15 through Tuesday, February 21. Heavy rains, strong winds and potential for flooding are expected at times.

For current storm information, and to view these weather advisories,  please click 
here

From the National Weather Service:

HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK:
.DAY ONE...2/15/17:  Increasing clouds today with rain developing in the North Bay towards midnight..

.DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN...2/16/17 to 2/21/17: A cold front will sweep through the Bay Area bringing moderate to heavy rain and gusty winds Thursday into Friday. Again, flooding will be possible along with downed trees and isolated power outages. Showers will likely linger into Friday with dry conditions returning region- wide by the upcoming weekend.

*A wind advisory is in effect for the North Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains and East Bay Hills late tonight through Thursday. Gusts 50-60 mph possible.

HYDROLOGIC OUTLOOK:
...Series of storms to impact Bay Area and Central Coast...

It was only 2 days ago (Monday) that real-time soil moisture sensors in the Bay Area indicated dissipation of the infiltrated rainwater from last week`s multiple storms. The sunny weather throughout California over the last 5 days or so has allowed creeks to drop back down to safe flow levels in coastal locations, but watersheds remain quite saturated just beneath the surface.

So again, California will experience another round of storms this week in a condition that favors rapid conversion of rain into runoff and a high likelihood of additional landslides and debris flows in mountainous terrain. The first storm in the series is forecast to impact the greater Bay Area as well as the Central Coast, first sweeping through the North Bay later tonight (Wednesday) and quickly progressing southwards through the Central Coast tomorrow (Thursday). This event will not likely lead to much flooding, except in isolated locations where drainage is poor and rainfall rates are high. Debris flows and shallow landslides are entirely possible even with this first system, as there are many slopes poised to respond or that are actively deforming as we speak, even in dry weather. Notable examples are in the Santa Cruz Mountains. The second system is expected to focus more on the Central Coast Friday, with several additional inches expected in the Santa Lucias and Santa Cruz Mountains of Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties, respectively. Rainfall accumulation in the Santa Lucias especially could be quite high (4 additional inches or more). Of note here is that this second system has a southern to southeastern source, and constitutes an Atmospheric River (AR) aimed at San Luis Obispo County. The upper Salinas River watershed is right in the cross hairs, and storm origination will prevent
the typical rainshadowing of the Salinas Valley that we often see in Monterey County. The expected result is minor to moderate flooding in many locations along the Salinas River, a situation we have not seen in many, many years. The middle portions of the Salinas River Valley, south of King City, will likely see bankfull conditions reached without much flooding, but areas near Soledad and northwards could experience periods of flooding Sunday into Monday where channel capacity is restricted and floodplain elevations are low relative to the channel. The Salinas River near Spreckels, for example, is expected to flood low lying areas. Other smaller watersheds will appreciably respond in Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties. Notably, the Arroyo Seco, Big Sur River, Cachagua Creek are examples of systems that may also experience flooding given the magnitude and trajectory of the storm system.

Continued unsettled weather is expected through the weekend and into next week, with a third system set to impact California on Monday. Rainfall totals for this third system and any subsequent wet weather next week will be clarified in coming days as refined weather simulations are completed. So please stay tuned to bulletins from NWS, NWS social media (NWSBayArea), or other sources of local weather information.


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Please make sure you are prepared by checking your property for areas where flooding could occur due to clogged drains or gutters. Make sure you have enough food, water and batteries. If you have time, please check on your neighbors who are elderly or housebound before, during and after the storm. During the storm, our Town staff could be extremely busy moving from location to location throughout town and may not be able to respond to you right away.
How you can help:
  • If you see a storm drain on your street that is filled with leaves or debris, and you don't see our Public Works crews in your area, go ahead remove the leaves - this may just help divert a water flow and avoid flooding onto your property or a neighbor's property.
  • Fill your sand bags now! Please do not wait for the storm to arrive

If you see a downed power line, contact PG&E at 800-743-5000 or non-emergency dispatch at 415-927-5150. If you see a downed tree, contact the Department of Public Works at 415-927-5057 during regular business hours and non-emergency dispatch after hours at 415-927-5150.  See below for additional information and resources.


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The Town of Corte Madera strongly encourages businesses and residents to prepare for winter storms. Please read below for information and resources available to help you prepare for the many issues winter storms may present. 

FLOODING
If your home or business is in a low-lying area with a history of flooding, please take the time now to prepare for the possibility of flooding:

  • Sand bag filling stations are available behind Fire Station 14 (342 Tamalpais Blvd.) and on Paradise Drive in the parking lot adjacent to the San Clemente Park / Cove School fields. All supplies are provided. Note: Sand bags are useful in preventing flooding but may not be 100% watertight. Properly filled and placed sandbags are meant to act as a barrier to divert moving water around, instead of through, buildings. Click here to see suggestions on how to effectively fill and stack sandbags.
  • If a blocked catch basin or stormdrain is causing flooding contact the Department of Public Works at 415-927-5057 during regular business hours and non-emergency dispatch after hours 415-927-5150. If the blocked storm drain is causing an immediate danger, call 911 from any land or mobile phone.
  • Please do not leave piles of leaves in the roadway. Please rake them up and place them in your green bin for disposal. Leaves left in the street will block storm drains and may lead to flooding.
For more information on high tides, click here.
For more current local weather, click here.


POWER OUTAGES
  • Have flashlights and battery-operated radios with fresh batteries ready for updates on storm conditions and power outages. Tune in to KQED 88.5 FM, KCBS 740 AM or KGO 810 AM.
  • Fire Officials recommend that residents do not use candles because of the risk of fire. Use battery-powered light sources.
  • Anticipate power outages and bookmark PG&E’s power outage page.


DOWNED TREES
Downed Trees and Limbs:
  • If the tree is within the Town limits of Corte Madera and is on Town property, or if the tree is blocking a public right of way or roadway contact the Department of Public Works at 415-927-5057 during regular business hours and non-emergency dispatch after hours at 415-927-5150.
  • If the tree is on private property or has fallen onto private property contact the property owner. 
  • If the tree is touching electrical wires contact PG&E at 800-743-500 or non-emergency dispatch at 415-927-5150. 
  • If the tree or limb is causing an immediate danger, call 911 from any land or mobile phone.

DRIVE WITH CAUTION
  • When driving in the rain, use extra caution and always have your headlights on. Remember, if you turn on your windshield wipers, turn on your headlights.
  • Please obey the speed limits and follow other traffic at a safe distance.
  • Do not drive through standing water. Only 6 inches of water can be enough to stall your car and cause irreparable damage to the engine.
  • Please anticipate road closures and traffic back-ups due to flooding, downed trees or landslides. 
  • Check traffic conditions before you hit the road: http://www.511.org/

CREATE / CHECK YOUR EMERGENCY KIT
A disaster supplies kit is simply a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency. Visithttp://readymarin.org/ for more information.


STAY INFORMED
In an emergency, communication is crucial to the safety of all residents and businesses. Please bookmark or sign up for the communications methods listed below:


WHEN TO CALL 911
In an emergency, call 911 immediately from any wired or wireless phone. An emergency is any situation that requires immediate assistance from the police, fire department or ambulance such as a fire, a car crash (especially if someone is injured), or a medical emergency where a person is requiring immediate medical attention.

If you hear the Town Emergency Siren, do not call 911. Instead, tune in to 1330 AM, which is operated by the Town of Corte Madera, and carries messages of evacuation instructions updated on as-needed basis during emergency situations. Or tune in to KQED 88.5 FM, KCBS 740 AM or KGO 810 AM or local TV stations for further information. You can also check the Town of Corte Madera's website and the other sites listed above for information.

Finally, you can click here to track the storm via radar.