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Storm Update: Flash Flood & High Wind Watch Issued

Storm Update: Flash Flood & High Wind Watch Issued

The National Weather Service has issued a Flash Flood Watch for the entire San Francisco Bay Area from late Saturday night through Sunday 6 p.m. and a High Wind Watch from Saturday 8 p.m. through Sunday at 10 a.m.

Periods of moderate to heavy rain Saturday night through Sunday morning on our already saturated soils could lead to flash flooding of streams and rivers, and in local urban areas.

Winds could exceed 40-50 mph and will be strongest near the coast and in higher elevations.

The storm system that has been heavy at times since Wednesday, and brought lightning and thunderstorms, is expected to continue through Monday. 

Friday’s forecast calls for showers and possible thunderstorms  that could produce heavy rainfall. Winds could gust as high as 24 mph and we could see between a tenth and a quarter inch of rain.

All in all, Palo Alto could get a total of about two inches of rain by Sunday. So far this month, Palo Alto has received 4.64 inches of rain. The average historically has been 2.97 inches of rain in January.

Get the latest forecast for Palo Alto here.

San Francisquito Creek Update as of Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) River Forecast Center is currently  predicting 0.8 inches of rain in the San Francisquito Creek watershed on Saturday night through Sunday morning. A peak flowrate of 1,430 cfs is estimated to occur on Sunday at 11 am. The predicted flowrate is far below the creek capacity. On Saturday, a moderate high tide of 5.9 feet is predicted at about 8 p.m. A higher tide of 8.3 feet is predicted at about 8 a.m. on Sunday. 

The City will continue to have crews closely monitoring the San Francisquito Creek levels throughout the storms, and the creek monitor sensors are fully functioning again after experiencing a technical problem with the communication system that reports the field data.

You can also monitor Palo Alto's creek levels here.

For real-time information about potential flooding on San Francisquito Creek, visit the San Francisquito Creek Joint Powers Authority’s (JPA) new Early Flood Warning System website where you can sign up for alerts.

Get Prepared

Besides having staff monitoring the storm, the City has sandbag stations at the following locations:

• Rinconada Park
• Mitchell Park
• Chaucer Street at Palo Alto Avenue
• Palo Alto Airport

Please note, all the pre-filled bags are gone and you must bring your shovel to fill the sandbags.

To report blocked storm drains, slides and fallen trees, call the Public Works after hours line at (650) 329-2413. Power outages can be reported at: (650) 496-6914.

The City encourages residents to stay aware of local conditions and to access updated information on creek levels, weather forecasts and more at:


Last Updated: January 15, 2017