Valley cities, homeowners prepare for storms

FRESNO, Calif.

Valley cities are preparing for potential flooding problems. Homeowners have also been taking precautions. Clearing rain gutters of leaves and other debris can help prevent serious water damage.

Rod Rich cleans and installs gutters. Inside them he has found everything from leaves to tennis balls, items which can cause water to back up. Rich explained, "Well if you don't clean them out you get overflows and dry rot issues."

Colorful leaves which signal the changing of the seasons can also clog storm drains. Homeowners can help by keeping curbs free of leaves.

City workers have been busy clearing areas near storm drains to prevent flooding should heavy rains fall.

Fresno Public Works Director Patrick Wiemiller said crews will be available 24/7 during the storm to deal with any problems. Wiemiller added, "We're as prepared as we can be for the storm that's coming in. We've had crews working to clear out storm drain inlets and just in general doing inspections on pumps and the like."

The city stopped providing filled sand bags a few years ago but the sand is still available for people who think they need the extra flood protection.

Wiemiller said, "This is more of a self-serve operation. We'll have materials available."

The Parkview and Belmont area near Roeding Park has long been prone to flooding. But a newly installed storm drain system should remedy the problem.

If you do experience flooding problems within the city of Fresno you can call 621-CITY for help.

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