SANTA ROSA, Calif. (KRON) – Firefighters are on alert in the North Bay, anticipating flooding and debris flows around the Glass Fire burn scar from this next storm system.
The heaviest rainfall is expected Saturday — emergency officials are hoping people will take the time to prepare homes and businesses from potential water damage.
Tuesday’s heavy rain flooded local roads in Santa Rosa, and more rain is on the way.
All this moisture coming from an atmospheric river, in this case infamously known as the “pineapple express,” that is expected to bring heavy rain Friday night through Saturday.
“We are expecting upwards of three-to-four inches of rain, at least here in the North Bay in the Santa Rosa area,” Paul Lowenthal of the Santa Rosa Fire Department stated.
The National Weather Service issued a flood watch Friday and Saturday for the entire Bay Area.
Lowenthal is keeping a close eye on the burn scar and local rivers, streams, creeks and roads prone to flooding.
“Slow down, plan for extra time to get where they need to go,” Lowenthal said. “Definitely don’t cross flooded roadways or flooded creek crossings. We’ve seen the effects of what that can do and drawing away emergency responders to an incident that is avoidable is something we definitely we don’t want to see.”
At Marin Ace Hardware in San Rafael, store manager Scott Osterman has been busy selling.
“Everything that has to do with preventing water from getting in your home and on top of things,” Osterman said. “Rain boots are flying out of here.”
While the rain from this upcoming storm system will overall be beneficial for the drought situation, residents are advised to prepare ahead of time.
“Water comes hard and fast, and sometimes it’s more than you expected,” Osterman said.
“We’re reliant upon property owners who are doing their part too to keep their gutters clear and rain waters flooding where it needs to go so the last thing we need is debris from private property owners impacting public storm drain systems and potentially leading to property damage,” Lowenthal said.
There are free sandbag stations available in most cities and counties.