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Orangevale Sun

Flood Preparedness in Sacramento County

Nov 02, 2023 12:06PM ● By Sacramento County News Release

Flooding on Highway 99 at Dillard overpass last winter. Photo courtesy of Sacramento County


SACRAMENTO COUNTY, CA (MPG) - This is a good time to make sure residents know what to do in case we have a repeat of last January's storms. 

It is important for you to know the flood risk to your home or business. After years of drought, the floods of 2023 were a stark reminder about the County's location in a floodplain. The County's Department of Water Resources has information to help residents understand the threat flooding may pose to property. Go to and click Flood Zone Information to learn more about your flood risk.

If you live in a flood zone, you can reduce the potential for damage to your property by being proactive.

1.       Before the rain falls, remember to clear storm drains of leaves and debris to ensure the water freely flows away from your home.  Clogs can cause localized flooding to streets that could eventually back up to your doorway.   

2.       If you come across street flooding, call 3-1-1 to have County crews come out and clear the clogs. 

3.       Don't drive through flooded streets. Turn around, don't drown! 

4.       If you see items dumped into nearby creaks, call 3-1-1 and report it.  It's important to clear those areas before the rain to avoid problems.

Even in non-disaster years, nearly 20 percent of flood insurance claims in Sacramento County come from moderate to low-risk areas. Residents can obtain flood insurance if their homes or businesses are not in the mapped floodplain. If unchecked, localized flooding can cause a lot of damage. If you live in an area prone to flooding, consider talking to a qualified insurance agent about flood insurance. It takes 30 days for flood insurance to take effect, so don't wait.

Did you know that Sacramento County takes part in a special Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) program that helps reduce the cost of flood insurance? Through FEMA, residents living in a designated Special Flood Hazard Area can save about $446.00 per year on the full cost of a standard flood insurance policy.

Take the time to develop an evacuation plan for you and your family. This plan will be useful for any potential disasters, including fires.  It's not too early to decide where you will go and what you should take.

What do you take if you need to leave?  Remember the “five Ps" you should have ready to go if you need to evacuate:

1.       People and pets

2.       Papers (important documents)

3.       Prescriptions (medication, eyeglasses, hearing aids)

4.       Pictures (Irreplaceable memories)

5.       Personal computer

Also, have a designated meeting place in case your family is separated. Visit to view evacuation maps as well as the region's flooding history.

Need sandbags? On November 1, Sacramento County will open two 
sandbag locations for residents in the unincorporated area. For those who live in a flood prone area, this will offer up the chance to grab sandbags prior to the rainy season. The County supplies the sand and bags, but bring a shovel. There is a 20-bag limit per visit.

Do you live near a creek or stream? Follow the rise of nearby streams with the Water Resources Rainfall and Stream Level Information System at This system monitors 47 different waterways in the County. If you live by one, it's one way to keep an eye on how high the water is rising.

You can also receive evacuation notices during flood threats by signing up to 
Sacramento Alert.  This Countywide system, run by the Office of Emergency Services, will keep you informed about potential flooding or other emergencies threatening your neighborhood. Be Aware. Be Prepared. Make yourself Storm Ready.