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Preparing for El Niño
Meteorologists predict there is a greater than 95% chance of El Niño conditions in Southern California throughout the winter of 2015-2016. Conditions include increased rainfall and winds, along with large wave action, which could result in flooding, debris flows, landslides, coastal erosion, coastal structure damage, and more, particularly in canyons and burn areas.

City Preparation

In order to prevent potential damage from El Niño conditions, the City is currently performing precautionary measures, including:
  • Cleaning and clearing all catch basins, pipes, culverts, and waterways of debris
  • Checking flood control devices and valves
  • Checking stream and creek banks
  • Patching and filling cracks in pavement
  • Trimming trees
  • Securing sign posts
  • Stocking up on and staging materials and safety equipment, such as K-rails, sandbags, barricades, plastic sheeting, flashing beacons and traffic control devices, street signs, posts and hardware, and water pumping equipment

The City is coordinating its preventative maintenance efforts with outside agencies, including Caltrans, Los Angeles County Flood Control District, Los Angeles County Public Works, Los Angeles County Beaches and Harbors, State Parks, National Parks, Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles County Sheriff, California Highway Patrol, and local utility companies.
Resident Preparation
Residents should also prepare their property to protect it from potential damage by completing the items on the Residents’ El Niño Preparation Checklist:
  • Clean storm drains and gutters
  • Clean debris around your property 
  • Improve drainage and water issues around your property
  • Check roof for potential leaks
  • Inspect structural support piles, if applicable
  • Restock emergency kits and equipment with supplies for a minimum of three days - The City's Survival Guide details what you should have in your emergency supply kit
  • Obtain and strategically deploy sandbags (available from the Los Angeles County Fire Department and Department of Beaches and Harbors)
  • Check flood insurance
Information Sources

Free Sandbags

  • View the Public Works Department's presentation on El Niño preparations given at the September 28, 2015 City Council meeting (select Item No. 1.A.). The presentation is also available for download/printing.
  • The County of Los Angeles has launched an El Niño webpage ( to communicate emergency information, preparedness and safety tips, weather forecasts, information for homeowners affected by floods and mudslides, and a dedicated Twitter feed of first responder agencies tweeting about this year’s storms. 
  • El Niño predictions bring advice to consider flood coverage - View information on the California Insurance Commissioner's website regarding what coverage you need and what you may want to add to your current home insurance policy. Questions about insurance coverage can be directed to the California Department of Insurance Consumer Hotline at 800-927-4357 or
  • Southern California Edison has plans in place to prepare for El Niño, and offers vital electricity safety tips for residents.

Contact Us
Arthur Aladjadjian
Public Works Superintendent
310-456-2489, ext. 235

23825 Stuart Ranch Road
Malibu, CA 90265
City of Malibu