WET WINTER WEATHER: How to survive LA's rainy season

Image of a person under an umbrella looking out onto a rainy street. Text reads WINTER WEATHER SAFETY

 

They say it never rains in Southern California, but Angelenos know that isn't true.

 

Preparing your home, car, and family for storms is an important part of being ready for winter weather in Los Angeles. With a few simple steps, you can prepare your home and car for winter weather.  

 

 

Preparing for Wet Winter Weather

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Know your flood risk. Flood insurance is not included in most homeowners or rental insurance policies. Get insurance now to make sure you’re covered before the storm.

 

Look around your home for hazards that might create problems during rainstorms. Are trees overgrown and hanging onto your roof? Are your gutters cleared? Do you live on a hillside that could erode? Address these issues now, before the rainy season arrives. Have tools, tarps, and sandbags ready. 

 

Secure loose items in your yard that might block storm drains and cause flooding on your street, including toys, tools, and yard décor. Call 3-1-1 or use the My311 mobile app to notify the City of debris that needs to be cleared.

 

Prepare your vehicle for wet winter weather. Ensure tires, brakes, and windshield wipers are in proper working condition. Review vehicle insurance policies to ensure that flood and water damage are included. Keep an emergency kit in your car, too! 

 

Consider installing rain-capture devices such as cisterns, rain barrels, and rain gardens. When you know a storm is coming, turn off your sprinklers! Save money and water, let the rain do all the work.

 

Listen to forecasts and advisories from local officials. Before a storm, you may be asked to move trash cans off the street or avoid certain areas at risk for flooding or mudslides.

 

Most importantly, you should always have an emergency kit and plan!

 

 

Safety During Winter Storms 

Slow down! Leave plenty of following distance between your car and other cars on the road.

 

Avoid driving or walking through areas prone to flooding and never bypass street barriers.

 

TURN AROUND, DON’T DROWN® - Never attempt to drive or walk through a flooded roadway or flowing stream. Six inches of fast-moving water can knock over an adult. Twelve inches of rushing water can carry a car. Driving through flood waters endangers your life and the lives of emergency responders who may have to rescue you. If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground if you can do so safely. But do not leave the car if it means entering moving water.

 

Secure loose items outside your home, including toys, furniture, or yard items that might clog your street’s storm drains and cause flooding.

 

Do not touch downed power lines or any electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water.

 

Follow any evacuation orders issued for your area by public safety officials due to flooding or mudslides. Register for emergency alerts from NotifyLA to receive evacuation information, shelter information, and other critical updates during emergencies. 

 

Turn off sprinkler systems for at least 72 hours after a storm. 

 

 

Winter Weather Resources

LAFD Sandbag Information:  lafd.org/news/lafd-provides-sandbags-homeowners-1

 

LA County Sandbag Informationdpw.lacounty.gov/dsg/sandbags

 

LA Stormwaterlastormwater.org/take-action/prepare-for-wet-weather

 

LA City Sanitationlacitysan.org/wetweather

 

LA County Winter Shelter Programlahsa.org

 

Snow Preparednessready.gov/winter-weather

 

EMD on Twitter: twitter.com/readyla

 

NotifyLA on Twitter: twitter.com/notifyla

 

LAFD on Twitter: twitter.com/lafd