Santa Rosa, CA – March 11, 2016 at 5:05 PM – The National Weather Service is currently forecasting a second storm to pass through Sonoma County, with more heavy rainfall and some minor flooding of rivers and creeks. The Russian River is cresting at 25.6 feet currently, which is over 6 feet below flood level (32 feet), and predictions show levels falling beginning at 2 am. A second crest of 25.1 feet is predicted at 11 am on Monday.
The County is closely monitoring the situation. While current conditions do not warrant opening the Emergency Operations Center, staff is prepared to do so if conditions change. As part of the County's Code Blue Response, the Homeless & Community Services Team has conducted intensive outreach to shelter operators to identify expanded capacity to shelter the homeless during the storm. Shelter information can be obtained by calling 2-1-1 and the Catholic Charities' Cold Weather Hotline at 707-800-2927.
The Sonoma County Department of Transportation and Public Works (TPW) is operating around the clock to keep unincorporated Sonoma County roads clear and maintain access for residents and safety personnel. Staff are available to respond to reports of flooded roads, downed trees and slides. Additionally, TPW is monitoring areas that are prone to flooding.
All drivers are encouraged to observe road closures and use detour routes. Road closures and restrictions information for the unincorporated areas can be found at http://roadconditions.sonoma-county.org/. Please call TPW at 707-565-5100 to report a road obstruction during business hours, and the Sheriff's Office at 707-565-2121 after hours.
Sandbags are available to residents at fire stations in West County. Contact your local fire district or check http://sonomacounty.ca.gov/Public-Safety/Sandbag-Pickup-Locations/ for availability.
Flood Safety Tips:
- Turn Around, Don't Drown!
- Avoid walking or driving through flood waters
- Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and 2 feet of water can sweep your vehicle away.
- If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground. Flash floods are the #1 cause of weather-related deaths in the U.S.
- If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. Remain in the car if the water is moving.
- Avoid camping or parking along streams, rivers, and creeks during heavy rainfall. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning.
The County of Sonoma will continue to provide storm related information and resources at http://sonomacounty.ca.gov/Public-Safety/