Are You El Niño Ready?

With this week's rains, El Niño is officially underway in Los Angeles.

El Niño is a weather pattern, a warming of the Pacific Ocean near the equator caused by a weakening of the trade winds that normally push sun-warmed waters to the west.


Strong El Niños usually mean above-average precipitation in the southern tier of the U.S. and warmer-than-average temperatures in the northern tier. Rainfall is often below average in the Ohio and Tennessee valleys and the Pacific Northwest. 

While the upcoming rains will be a welcome relief from California’s historic drought, intense and frequent storms can wreak havoc on LA. After four years of drought and wildfires, much of the land across L.A. is incapable of absorbing large amounts of rain, increasing the potential for flooding and mudslides.

It's important to be aware of the hazards in your area and know what to do before, during, and after severe weather strikes:Get_El_Niño_Ready.png
  • Register with NotifyLA to receive emergency alerts specific to your geographic area via text, voice, or email message. Go to to sign up and to find useful information about preparing for wet weather.
  • We’re in a drought! Consider installing rain-capture devices such as cisterns, rain barrels, and rain gardens. When you know a storm is coming, turn off your sprinklers! Save money and water, let the rain do all the work.
  • Most importantly, you should always have an emergency kit and plan! 
  • A good emergency kit includes food, water, and medications to last you at least 72 hours. Be sure to include a flashlight and spare batteries in case you lose power. Don’t forget pets!
  • Emergencies can be confusing and chaotic. An emergency plan helps you and your loved ones know what to do and where to go if disaster strikes.
The City of Los Angeles is committed to providing resources to keep you and your family safe during this El Niño. For the most up-to-date information during emergencies, or to report a problem, visit: 

Pick up Sandbags to Prevent Flooding

the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) has ordered more than 200,000 ready-to-fill sandbags and 250 tons of sand available at all Neighborhood Fire Stations (Please note that residents are welcomed to no more than 25 bags). 

CD3 residents can visit Fire Station 84 (Woodland Hills) at 21050 Burbank Blvd, or call (818) 756-8684.

For more tips on how to stay safe this El Niño, visit

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