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San Diego Leaders Urge Preparedness Ahead Of Next Round Of Rain

San Diego Leaders Urge Preparedness Ahead Of Next Round Of Rain

San Diego County politicians and emergency leaders have been assessing their response to last week’s El Niño-driven storms. Gathering Monday at the San Diego County Office of Emergency Services, they urged the public to prepare for the next round of rain.

"We've had a big week as all of you know," said county Board of Supervisors Chairman Ron Roberts. "That’s kind of behind us, but we’ve got probably more coming."

Brace yourselves for three more months of potential El Niño downpours. That’s the message Roberts and others are urging a week after heavy storms barreled into the region.

Flooding, erosion, power outages and traffic snarls resulted from El Niño's first punch.

"Today is about reminding, reinforcing and probably the most important thing — planning," said San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer. He said city crews last week responded to 500 storm-related calls.

Photo by Susan Murphy

San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer stands with other city and county leaders to discuss recent El Niño storms and to urge the public to prepare, Jan. 11, 2016.

Firefighters and lifeguards performed 67 water rescues. Faulconer said crews will continue to be deployed to high-risk areas ahead of future storms.

"Please follow all instructions by our public safety personnel," Faulconer urged. "Take your time, drive carefully — particularly during the rain and some of the surges that we have."

Residents were also advised to have an evacuation plan with at least two route options and an emergency kit, especially those who live near recent burn areas or below a hill or canyon.

"As the ground becomes more and more saturated and we get later and later in the rainy season we are more susceptible to debris flows and landslides," said Holly Crawford, director of the county’s Office of Emergency Services.

To register your cellphone with the county’s mass notification system, go to www.readysandiego.org.

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