Storm updates, preparedness tips and sandbag locations in Malibu

UPDATED – January 3, 2023 – The NWS Los Angeles/Oxnard (NWS) forecasts that this week’s storm system will bring widespread moderate to locally heavy rain Wednesday morning, January 4,  through Thursday afternoon, followed by scattered showers Friday night and Saturday, and more moderate rain Sunday into Monday, January 9. 

Strong gusty winds are expected with gusts of 35-50 mph for the coast and valleys. Hazardous beach conditions are expected, with powerful  waves of 8-12 feet, potentially up 15 feet, with dangerous rip currents, beach erosion, storm debris in the water and potential flooding in low-lying areas on the coast. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LADPH) recommends avoiding contact with ocean within 72 hours of significant rainfall, especially near discharging creeks and stormdrains, due to high levels of bacteria and pollutants from storm runoff. Hazardous boating conditions are expected and NWS has issued a Gale Watch for the LA County coast January 5, 3AM – 2PM. For detailed weather information, forecasts and hazards, visit NWS LA/Oxnard.

ROAD HAZARDS

Please be cautious on the roads and be prepared for potentially hazardous driving conditions including water, mud, rocks and debris in the roadway and low visibility, and possible power outages and traffic signal outages due downed power lines. Never approach or touch downed power lines – stay back, warn others and call 911. Under California law, always approach an intersection with a malfunctioning traffic signal as if it is an all-way stop sign – that means come to a complete stop.

City and County Public Works crews and Caltrans are monitoring PCH and canyon roads in Malibu for hazards, using bladetrucks to keep the roadways clear, checking and clearing drainage culverts and storm drains, and pre-placing equipment.

SANDBAGS

Sandbags are available at Los Angeles County Fire Stations. Call stations to find out if filled sandbags and sand are available: Station 88, Malibu Road – (310) 456-2812, Station 70, PCH & Carbon Canyon – (310) 456-2513, Station 71, PCH & Zumirez – (310) 457-2578, Station 99, PCH & Encinal Canyon Rd – (310) 457-3706, Station 72, 1832 Decker Rd –  (310) 457-6186. Search for which locations in LA County have sand, sandbags and filled sandbags on the LA County Department of Public Works website.  

Please do not remove sand from the beach to fill sandbags. Sand is crucial for beach habitats, and removing it from the beach is illegal in LA County. Plastic sandbags are prohibited in the City of Malibu (jute, burlap or other natural fiber bags are allowed).

BEACHES

The LA County Department of Public Health advises the public to avoid contact with ocean water near discharging rivers, creeks and storm drains within 72 hours of significant rainfall due to high levels of bacteria and pollution. Beach hazards may include rip currents, beach erosion, powerful surf, and debris in the water. Always swim near a staffed lifeguard station.

STAY AWARE AND INFORMED

Monitor weather and emergency information on local news, and Sign up for weather, beach or emergency alerts via text or email from the City of Malibu at www.malibucity.org/news, scroll down to “Alert Center.” PLEASE NOTE – the City will send out “Utility Advisories” for power outages, “Weather Advisories” for weather information, and “Emergency Alerts” in case of an emergency that threatens lives and properties. All current City alerts are posted on the website. All emergency information will be posted on the City website and on social media: Facebook,  Twitter and Instagram.

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