Storm & Flood Preparedness

Sandbag Corp Yard public Opens in new windowOur entire region and the state of California were hard-hit by the winter storms of 2022-23. The City is taking proactive steps to prepare for the upcoming rainy season, and we encourage residents to do the same.

Community Flood & Stormwater Protection Initiative

In addition to near-term efforts, the City is working on the Community Flood & Storm Protection Initiative, which seeks to establish a reliable funding sources for stormwater infrastructure and system improvements. Property owners were sent a mailed ballot in early November 2023 to vote on the proposed stormwater fee. Ballots must be received by Dec. 17, 2023 - postmarks do not count. 

How You Can be Prepared:

Sandbags Available to San Mateo Residents
Visit our sandbag web page for more information & locations.
We now have four self-serve sandbag stations open to City of San Mateo residents during the wet weather season.

Sandbag Rules
  • MAXIMUM 10 bags per vehicle
  • MUST be a San Mateo resident or Property Owner (be prepared to show proof of residency/ownership)
  • BRING your own shovel & heavy-duty trash bags - Sand and bags will be provided based on availability - bring your own heavy-duty trash bags in case bags run out.
  • MUST be able to fill the bags yourself (these are self-serve locations)
  • View our web page for an interactive map and tips on using sandbags

How the City is Preparing & Responding

  • Leading up to and through the wet weather season, teams are out re-clearing storm water catch basins and trash racks throughout the city
  • In areas more prone to flooding, for safety reasons we may proactively close roads and provide detours
  • Testing stormwater pump stations and planning for operational needs throughout the storm
  • Preparing for additional staffing to assist during intense storms
  • Maintaining a sandbag station at the Corp Yard 
  • Marina Lagoon will be held at lower operating levels and may be staffed 24/7 during extreme storm events
  • Arborists monitor public trees
  • We coordinate with the County and neighboring cities
  • We monitor areas with a history of flooding for storm conditions. Read more about these flood-vulnerable areas that are part of the FEMA Flood Zone.

Emergency Preparedness Resources

Find tips from FEMA on how to build your emergency preparedness kit. San Mateo Consolidated Fire's Office of Emergency Services maintains a robust list of resources for your own emergency planning. Preparing before an emergency can make a big difference when you have little time to spare. 

Important Links
  1. Be Prepared
  2. Who to Call
  3. Resources & Recovery Information

Be Prepared & Safety Tips

  • Get prepared in advance – get any supplies, groceries, sandbags etc.
  • Charge your devices, test your flashlights, set aside drinking water -- be ready in the event of power loss 
  • Avoid driving or being out on the roads during storms. If you must drive, NEVER DRIVE THROUGH A FLOODED ROAD
  • If you have a storm drain outside your home, consider adopting it to help clear it of debris prior to the rain www.cityofsanmateo.org/adoptadrain  
  • Tend to your household. If you live near water (creek, lagoon, hillside etc), shore up your property. Secure outside furniture and garbage cans.
  • Check on your neighbors. Whether they are elderly or new to California winter storms, checking on your neighbor, letting them know they are not alone 
  • Follow us on social media for updates
  • Sign up for emergency alerts through the Countywide SMC Alert http://www.smcalert.info/ and for San Mateo Police Department’s Nixle https://www.nixle.us/san-mateo-ca-police-department

Traffic & Road Closure Updates