Special Weather Information

Sudden rainy weather conditions can cause potential flooding, property damage and threaten life-safety. Below are some helpful tips from the City of Santa Ana Planning and Building Agency to assist you in making plans and preparations to homes and offices to avoid potential loss and damage during the rainy season.

1. Fix a leaky roof now. Inspect commercial and residential roofs for missing roofing materials, remove accumulated debris, check metal roof flashings and drip edges to make sure they are secure in place.

2. Clean out gutters, downspouts and catch basins, and then clear them again after the first significant rain. Look for potential breaks or damaged areas in the gutters and downspouts and make necessary repairs.

3. Consider investing in a portable emergency generator, especially the structure is in a neighborhood that is susceptible to power outages.

4. Paint exterior wood structures including wood fascia boards and trim. Cracks and disrepair in paint may allow water to penetrate the wood and promote decay.

5. Inspect windows and doors to make sure they are in good repair. Check caulking and sealants, weather-stripping, and the condition of glazing for loose panes or cracks.

6. Make sure yard drains drain properly. Clear blockages in yard drainage piping. Any impervious hard-scape, rock and decomposed granite that has been substituted for lawn may have created changes in the drainage pattern in a yard. Changes to the landscape may also have changed the grading and eliminated necessary swales. Consider consulting an irrigation and drainage specialist to avoid the serious problems a heavy storm might cause.

7. Turn off automatic watering systems.

8. Consider installing rain barrels at downspouts which are a relatively inexpensive way to capture water coming off a roof for later use.

9. Loosen compacted soil that may have dried out due to drought conditions. Hard, compacted soil will repel water initially. Turning the soil and covering with a layer of mulch will enable the soil to better absorb the rain.

10. Check the health of existing trees on a property. Drought conditions may have weakened root systems. An arborist can perform an assessment and provide suggestions to avoid potential damage caused by falling trees after heavy rain.

11. Secure yards by reinforcing deteriorated fencing, storing outdoor furniture or other items that could cause damage in windy conditions, or be damaged by wet weather.

12. Verify that exterior electrical panels and outlets have weather-resistant covers and are GFCI protected. Remove any unsafe or exposed wiring and avoid using extension cords.

13. Keep various materials on hand to divert water such as sandbags and straw-waddle which can effectively channel water away from structures to appropriate drainage areas.

14. Communicate with neighboring property owners and discuss potential concerns of heavy rain and runoff in the nearby area.

15. Make a plan. Get a kit. Discuss emergency preparedness with family members and coworkers. Keep emergency food, water and other supplies ready. For more information on disaster preparedness including flood safety, visit www.ready.gov.