News

Tri-Valley communities prep for second major storm

Residents are being asked to avoid going outside, prepare for the worst

Danville Town Councilmember Renee Morgan's neighborhood street on Messian Place flooded as a result of Saturday's storm. (Contributed photo)

The National Weather Service has issued flood watches and high wind warnings in preparation for a second strong storm and atmospheric river that could be as bad -- if not worse -- than the one that rocked communities in the Tri-Valley on Saturday.

"While the storm on Dec. 31 brought significant impacts to our community, the forecast for Wednesday and Thursday of this week is expected to bring more significant amounts of rain," according to a news release from the city of Pleasanton. "Because of ground saturation and erosion from the storm on December 31, expect to see more debris flow with the upcoming storm."

St. John Circle crossing flooded. (Contributed photo)

The town of Danville proclaimed a local emergency on Tuesday due to the upcoming storm which will end on Jan. 10. This will allow for greater flexibility to obtain disaster response equipment, according to a news release.

"The Bay Area's recent deluge may be just the tip of the iceberg, as more rain is expected to arrive on Wednesday and continue into next week," according to a news release from the city of Dublin. "If you've already experienced flooding during a prior storm, you will likely experience flooding again. Water flow is expected to exceed channel capacity."

The news release also states that a fallen tree is blocking Alameda Diablo, which is within the unincorporated community of Diablo and that Diablo Road is open to one-way traffic only.

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"The town has deployed all available maintenance staff and contractors for clean-up ahead of a second atmospheric river storm expected January 4," the news release states. "Crews have been able to re-open roadways after clearing thick mud from flooded areas. Town engineers are also out along Diablo Road between Fairway Drive and Alameda Diablo, where the storm caused erosion along the eastbound side of the road."

According to the weather services' website, both the flood watches and high wind warnings have been issued from 4 a.m. on Wednesday through 10 a.m. on Thursday.

"Southerly winds look to be much stronger with the (Wednesday - Thursday) storm than what we saw on New Years Eve," according to the weather service. "High wind watches are up for much of NorCal (Wednesday - Thursday). Saturated soils and strong winds will likely bring down trees leading to power outages and blocked roads."

The weather forecast predicts the southerly winds to hit 20 to 30 miles per hour with gusts up to 50 miles per hour in valley locations, 30 to 40 miles per hour with gusts up to 60 miles per hour above 1,000 feet and local gusts hitting around 70 miles per hour in the coast and in the highest peaks.

As the Tri-Valley cities are prepping for the next round of floods by stacking up on sandbags, which the Zone 7 Water Agency has stated that it has run out in most locations apart from two, places like Danville are trying their best to minimize the damage.

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According to a news release from Monday, the weekend storm brought an unprecedented amount of rainfall to the extent of which the town has never seen before.

"The town experienced 5.5 inches of rainfall within less than 24 hours," according to the news release. "The intensity and magnitude of the storm was such that storm drainage systems including creeks and storm drains were overwhelmed."

"Water flowed into streets in some areas, carrying with it mud and organic debris," the release stated. "This resulted in the need for street closures, and numerous persons who attempted to navigate these areas were either forced to abandon their vehicles or had to be rescued."

Residents are now being asked to check drain inlets and facilities located on their property to ensure that they are unobstructed and free flowing, clear any debris from storm drains and also use sandbags just like the surrounding cities.

According to a NextDoor post from Zone 7, sandbags are now limited and are only available at the North Canyons Administrative Building in Livermore and the Parkside Administrative Building in Pleasanton.

Apart from the life-threatening falling trees and flooding, residents should also be wary of landslides and rockslides in hilly terrains, according to the weather website.

"Saturated soils will allow for trees to topple more easily during this prolonged wind event," according to the weather service. "The strongest winds will be during the cold frontal passage late Wednesday afternoon through early Thursday morning."

Residents are being asked to avoid being out in forested areas, try to stay in the lower levels of their homes and avoid any windows. They should also be wary when driving as many cities are asking people to either avoid driving altogether or to turn around if you see areas that are flooded.

Danville Town Councilmember Renee Morgan stands in the middle of her neighborhood street on Messian Place along with San Ramon Valley Fire personnel during Saturday's storm. (Contributed photo)

Throughout the Tri-Valley, other cities have been helping their residents in various ways to prepare for the upcoming storm -- from having sand bags being made available to residents to offering shelter for homeless people in Livermore.

The overnight shelter, which is open from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m., is a warming center operated by the Livermore-based nonprofit One Nation Dream Makers. According to a news release from the nonprofit, as of Tuesday 12 to 13 guests are utilizing the warming center each night -- 25 guests in total can be accommodated.

In Livermore, the Livermore Area Recreation and Park District also sent out a notice stating that Sycamore Grove Park will remain closed until further notice due to high water and flooding that came from the heavy rain flow over the weekend.

"LARPD Rangers will continue monitoring water levels and assess damage throughout the week," the notice stated.

The East Bay Regional Park District has also issued a news release stating that all of its regional parks will be closed Wednesday through Thursday. The district plans to reopen the parks on Friday after conditions are assessed.

Apart from park closures, Livermore Police also had their hands full during the weekend storm much like other cities in the Tri-Valley as they helped stranded motorists in the area of North Canyons Parkway and Independence Drive.

The San Ramon Police Department had their own field day on Saturday as well alongside San Ramon Valley Fire after responding to over one hundred flood and storm related incidents.

During the storm, both departments helped 13 residents on Fircrest Lane evacuate and were taken to a local senior center due to the severe flooding.

The flooding there resulted in Alcosta Boulevard being closed from the Iron Horse Regional Trail to Stagecoach Road into Sunday.

Pleasanton similarly had several flooded streets -- most of which are still closed.

Foothill Road is closed from Bernal Avenue to Kilkare Road with no time estimate for its reopening -- all of Kilkare Road is also closed.

"The city experienced considerable rain, at a level much higher than expected by weather experts, just over several inches of rain within less than 24 hours," according to a Tuesday news release from the city. "The intensity and magnitude of the storm were such that storm drainage systems including creeks, arroyos and storm drains were overwhelmed.

The Centennial Trail was also closed from Rotary Park to Harvest Circle due to flooding and the crossing at St. John Circle was completely underwater, according to the city's official Twitter page.

The trail is still closed along with the north side of the Arroyo Mocho trail from Hopyard Road to the Arroyo de la Laguna

"The City immediately began assessing impacts on infrastructure to identify needed repairs," according to the Tuesday news release. "Recovery efforts since Jan. 1 have focused on clearing trees, storm drains, creeks and arroyos to alleviate existing flooding and prepare waterways for the upcoming rains, although clean up work is taking place across the city."

As of Tuesday, the city of Pleasanton has run out of sandbags after being completely depleted on Jan. 1 but expects to have more by Wednesday morning.

According to the news release, the city will have a limited supply available in the parking lot of the Operations Services Department located at 3333 Busch Rd.

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Christian Trujano
 
Christian Trujano, a Bay Area native and San Jose State alum, joined Embarcadero Media in May 2022 following his graduation. He is an award-winning student journalist who has covered stories in San Jose ranging from crime to higher education. Read more >>

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Tri-Valley communities prep for second major storm

Residents are being asked to avoid going outside, prepare for the worst

by / Danville San Ramon

Uploaded: Tue, Jan 3, 2023, 8:56 pm

The National Weather Service has issued flood watches and high wind warnings in preparation for a second strong storm and atmospheric river that could be as bad -- if not worse -- than the one that rocked communities in the Tri-Valley on Saturday.

"While the storm on Dec. 31 brought significant impacts to our community, the forecast for Wednesday and Thursday of this week is expected to bring more significant amounts of rain," according to a news release from the city of Pleasanton. "Because of ground saturation and erosion from the storm on December 31, expect to see more debris flow with the upcoming storm."

The town of Danville proclaimed a local emergency on Tuesday due to the upcoming storm which will end on Jan. 10. This will allow for greater flexibility to obtain disaster response equipment, according to a news release.

"The Bay Area's recent deluge may be just the tip of the iceberg, as more rain is expected to arrive on Wednesday and continue into next week," according to a news release from the city of Dublin. "If you've already experienced flooding during a prior storm, you will likely experience flooding again. Water flow is expected to exceed channel capacity."

The news release also states that a fallen tree is blocking Alameda Diablo, which is within the unincorporated community of Diablo and that Diablo Road is open to one-way traffic only.

"The town has deployed all available maintenance staff and contractors for clean-up ahead of a second atmospheric river storm expected January 4," the news release states. "Crews have been able to re-open roadways after clearing thick mud from flooded areas. Town engineers are also out along Diablo Road between Fairway Drive and Alameda Diablo, where the storm caused erosion along the eastbound side of the road."

According to the weather services' website, both the flood watches and high wind warnings have been issued from 4 a.m. on Wednesday through 10 a.m. on Thursday.

"Southerly winds look to be much stronger with the (Wednesday - Thursday) storm than what we saw on New Years Eve," according to the weather service. "High wind watches are up for much of NorCal (Wednesday - Thursday). Saturated soils and strong winds will likely bring down trees leading to power outages and blocked roads."

The weather forecast predicts the southerly winds to hit 20 to 30 miles per hour with gusts up to 50 miles per hour in valley locations, 30 to 40 miles per hour with gusts up to 60 miles per hour above 1,000 feet and local gusts hitting around 70 miles per hour in the coast and in the highest peaks.

As the Tri-Valley cities are prepping for the next round of floods by stacking up on sandbags, which the Zone 7 Water Agency has stated that it has run out in most locations apart from two, places like Danville are trying their best to minimize the damage.

According to a news release from Monday, the weekend storm brought an unprecedented amount of rainfall to the extent of which the town has never seen before.

"The town experienced 5.5 inches of rainfall within less than 24 hours," according to the news release. "The intensity and magnitude of the storm was such that storm drainage systems including creeks and storm drains were overwhelmed."

"Water flowed into streets in some areas, carrying with it mud and organic debris," the release stated. "This resulted in the need for street closures, and numerous persons who attempted to navigate these areas were either forced to abandon their vehicles or had to be rescued."

Residents are now being asked to check drain inlets and facilities located on their property to ensure that they are unobstructed and free flowing, clear any debris from storm drains and also use sandbags just like the surrounding cities.

According to a NextDoor post from Zone 7, sandbags are now limited and are only available at the North Canyons Administrative Building in Livermore and the Parkside Administrative Building in Pleasanton.

Apart from the life-threatening falling trees and flooding, residents should also be wary of landslides and rockslides in hilly terrains, according to the weather website.

"Saturated soils will allow for trees to topple more easily during this prolonged wind event," according to the weather service. "The strongest winds will be during the cold frontal passage late Wednesday afternoon through early Thursday morning."

Residents are being asked to avoid being out in forested areas, try to stay in the lower levels of their homes and avoid any windows. They should also be wary when driving as many cities are asking people to either avoid driving altogether or to turn around if you see areas that are flooded.

Throughout the Tri-Valley, other cities have been helping their residents in various ways to prepare for the upcoming storm -- from having sand bags being made available to residents to offering shelter for homeless people in Livermore.

The overnight shelter, which is open from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m., is a warming center operated by the Livermore-based nonprofit One Nation Dream Makers. According to a news release from the nonprofit, as of Tuesday 12 to 13 guests are utilizing the warming center each night -- 25 guests in total can be accommodated.

In Livermore, the Livermore Area Recreation and Park District also sent out a notice stating that Sycamore Grove Park will remain closed until further notice due to high water and flooding that came from the heavy rain flow over the weekend.

"LARPD Rangers will continue monitoring water levels and assess damage throughout the week," the notice stated.

The East Bay Regional Park District has also issued a news release stating that all of its regional parks will be closed Wednesday through Thursday. The district plans to reopen the parks on Friday after conditions are assessed.

Apart from park closures, Livermore Police also had their hands full during the weekend storm much like other cities in the Tri-Valley as they helped stranded motorists in the area of North Canyons Parkway and Independence Drive.

The San Ramon Police Department had their own field day on Saturday as well alongside San Ramon Valley Fire after responding to over one hundred flood and storm related incidents.

During the storm, both departments helped 13 residents on Fircrest Lane evacuate and were taken to a local senior center due to the severe flooding.

The flooding there resulted in Alcosta Boulevard being closed from the Iron Horse Regional Trail to Stagecoach Road into Sunday.

Pleasanton similarly had several flooded streets -- most of which are still closed.

Foothill Road is closed from Bernal Avenue to Kilkare Road with no time estimate for its reopening -- all of Kilkare Road is also closed.

"The city experienced considerable rain, at a level much higher than expected by weather experts, just over several inches of rain within less than 24 hours," according to a Tuesday news release from the city. "The intensity and magnitude of the storm were such that storm drainage systems including creeks, arroyos and storm drains were overwhelmed.

The Centennial Trail was also closed from Rotary Park to Harvest Circle due to flooding and the crossing at St. John Circle was completely underwater, according to the city's official Twitter page.

The trail is still closed along with the north side of the Arroyo Mocho trail from Hopyard Road to the Arroyo de la Laguna

"The City immediately began assessing impacts on infrastructure to identify needed repairs," according to the Tuesday news release. "Recovery efforts since Jan. 1 have focused on clearing trees, storm drains, creeks and arroyos to alleviate existing flooding and prepare waterways for the upcoming rains, although clean up work is taking place across the city."

As of Tuesday, the city of Pleasanton has run out of sandbags after being completely depleted on Jan. 1 but expects to have more by Wednesday morning.

According to the news release, the city will have a limited supply available in the parking lot of the Operations Services Department located at 3333 Busch Rd.

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