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San Diego prepares for stormy weather, offers tips and sandbags to residents

Dan Weber shoveling sand into sandbags provided by San Diego County ahead of a winter storm heading into the area, Dec. 13, 2021.
Nic McVicker
Dan Weber shoveling sand into sandbags provided by San Diego County ahead of a winter storm heading into the area, Dec. 13, 2021.

San Diego is preparing for stormy weather over the next week and leaders are encouraging area residents to take proactive steps to prevent flooding.

According to the city statement, the Stormwater Department will be temporarily placing "no parking" signs in low-lying or flood-risk areas, cleaning storm drains and inlets with a history of debris buildup, street sweeping to reduce trash and pollutants from entering our waterways and monitoring more than 46,000 storm drains citywide for any issues.

On an individual level, city and county residents can assist by:

  • Sweeping and picking up trash, leaves, grass clippings and other debris that collect around storm drains and curb gutters near your home;
  • Keeping the lid securely closed on trash and recycle bins when placing them out on the street for collection and placing them several feet away from the curb to not impede stormwater;
  • Turning off irrigation to save water;
  • Knowing safe routes to and from your home should flooding occur;
  • Slowing down and not attempting to traverse floodwaters; and
  • Not lifting manhole covers or grates in the event of flooding.

Additionally, sandbags are available in limited supply and can be picked up at nine recreation centers centrally located in each San Diego City Council District. Residents with identification showing proof of residency can receive up to 10 empty sandbags.


Residents should pick them up today, as the centers will be closed Saturday, Dec. 31, through Monday, Jan. 2, for the holiday.

As the sandbags are not pre-filled, residents are encouraged to also plan to buy sand at local hardware stores, landscape suppliers or wherever else sand can be purchased.

The locations to pick up sandbags are Standley Recreation Center, Robb Athletic Field, Golden Hill Recreation Center, Martin Luther King, Jr. Recreation Center, Scripps Ranch Recreation Center, North Clairemont Recreation Center, Allied Gardens Recreation Center, San Ysidro Community Activity Center and City Heights Recreation Center.

During the rains, crews from the city's Storm Patrol will be monitoring areas throughout the city and responding to incidents, such as temporary flooding and downed trees or branches.

Residents can report events, such as flooding or downed trees, by using the Get It Done application or by calling 619-527-7500. If it is a life- threatening emergency, call 911.