See how the City of Sacramento responded during last weekend’s 500-year-storm event

It was an all-hands-on-deck event for City of Sacramento staff and crews.

More rain fell Sunday than on any other day in Sacramento’s recorded history, according to the National Weather Service. Sacramento in a 24-hour period received more than 5 inches of rain.

City staff and crews worked around the clock over the weekend to respond to the storm and serve residents and those in need.

“As mayor of this city, I’m proud of the way our employees responded to this record breaking storm,” said Mayor Darrell Steinberg. “From standing up a safe place for unhoused people to shelter to keeping our storm-water system running and our streets clear, our staff worked non-stop for the benefit of Sacramento residents.”


Here is how the City prepared and worked through what staff estimate to be a 500-year storm event:

Calls to City

In preparation for the storm, 311 assigned additional staff to overtime to help answer phones and dispatch to rain patrol crews.

311 received nearly 3,000 calls and online requests for drain inlets, flooded streets or intersections and other storm-related concerns, more than triple the normal call volume on any given Sunday.

Servicing streets and trees

The Public Works Department and the Department of Utilities prepared for the storm last week by trimming trees and clearing drains in flood-prone areas of the City.

In addition, DOU has spent months doing critical infrastructure maintenance work on the City’s flood-control system, which includes creeks, bridges and roads throughout Sacramento. Recent projects such as the McKinley Water Vault, which held six million gallons of storm water Sunday, also helped to reduce flooding impacts to nearby neighborhoods.

Public Works staff on Sunday distributed 360 sandbags to residents and continue to pick up tree limbs in the right-of-way. They also continue to work on remaining street requests, including pothole repair. Utilities staff worked throughout Sunday pumping water out of flooded areas and clearing debris from storm drains.

Storm centers

The City’s Office of Emergency Management, Department of Community Response, and Youth, Parks & Community Enrichment stood up two storm centers – located at City Hall Lobby (915 I St.) and the Hagginwood Community Center (3271 Marysville Blvd.) — that were open Saturday evening through Monday morning.

The centers provided food, water, warmth and a dry place for approximately 175 individuals.

Public safety

In addition to routine calls to the Sacramento Police Department, officers also responded to calls regarding vehicle collisions and hazards in the roadway that were created by the storm.  Officers also assisted City crews with traffic control when needed while crews worked to clear hazards in the roadway.

Sacramento Fire Department responded to several storm-related rescues throughout Sunday evening including rescuing 14 homeless people from a flooded area, assisting 10 residents from two flooded homes and rescuing one homeless person from swift moving water.

Related stories:

City, County collaborating on relief efforts for unsheltered residents during weekend storms

As heavy rainfall continues, City advises residents to stay at home and avoid driving, opens two sandbag locations

With heavy rain and wind expected this weekend, City asks residents to help keep storm drains clear

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