January 20, 2010

County of Orange Responds to Storms

As of this afternoon, the County of Orange activated the Emergency Operations Center. The Public Information Hotline is ready to accept calls of inquiry regarding impacts of the on-going series of storms affecting Orange County. The Public Information Hotline phone number is (714) 628-7085. For any life-threatening emergency, please call 911.

The heaviest rains and winds to hit are expected within the next few hours. Areas of potential concern for the Fifth District include Woodfield Park in Aliso Viejo and El Toro Road between the I-5 and Moulton Parkway as flooding is expected.

Additionally, to assist residents, sand bags are available to the public at various fire stations throughout the County. To view a list of sand bag distribution locations, please click here.

OC Public Works/Operations and Maintenance personnel remain on-call and stand ready to be mobilized as needed. Should the rain event become larger than the on-call staff can support, the County will open the Department Operation Center (DOC) to ensure a sufficient response.

As the severe weather continues, some cities may choose to activate AlertOC, Orange County’s regional emergency notification system, to help keep their residents informed. Messages containing information about potential evacuations and shelter centers for severely flooded neighborhoods or potential debris flow locations are a few examples of when AlertOC might be used. To register to receive these important notifications, visit www.AlertOC.com.

The storms have also impacted flight operations at John Wayne Airport. As a result, passengers may experience intermittent delays throughout the week and are encouraged to check with their airline for the most up to date flight status.

The Orange County Fire Authority would like to remind everyone to stay off the roads to the best extent possible. If you must drive, never drive into a flooded area. Remember, only two feet of water is all it takes to carry away most automobiles. Once waters begin to rise, or mud and debris flows begin, they are very difficult to divert. If your car stalls, immediately abandon it and climb to higher ground. For more useful tips, visit OCFA’s website at www.ocfa.org.

ReadyOC.org, the County’s new emergency preparedness and response website, is your tool to stay informed throughout these storms about impending weather forecasts and storm impacts. Visit www.ReadyOC.org for all the latest.

As always, it is an honor to serve as your County Supervisor. Please do not hesitate to share with me any questions or comments.


Pat Bates
Supervisor, 5th District