Governor Newsom Declares State of Emergency Amidst Southern California Storms
Governor Gavin Newsom has declared a state of emergency for eight Southern California counties as a series of winter storms unleash high winds, damaging rain, and heavy snowfall across the state. The proclamation covers Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura counties.
The emergency proclamation encompasses various measures, including authorizing a potential California National Guard response, streamlining unemployment benefits for affected residents, and facilitating the process for out-of-state contractors and utilities to repair storm damage.
Earlier today, Governor Newsom visited the State Operations Center near Sacramento for an update on the storm and the state’s ongoing response efforts. The state has mobilized a record 8,500 emergency response assets, positioned strategically to address potential flooding, landslides, travel disruptions, and 911 calls.
Key Steps to Stay Safe During the Storm
- Stay Connected: Utilize the 311 helpline for assistance or questions, and in critical emergencies, dial 911. Stay informed by signing up for emergency alerts, including warnings and evacuation notices at CalAlerts.org.
- Trust Reliable Sources: Rely on trusted information from state and local government or emergency management websites and official social media accounts. Verify details from reputable news outlets and meteorologists, avoiding unverified sources or self-proclaimed ‘experts’ without credentials.
- Prepare for High Winds: Take proactive measures before a high wind event, such as securing outdoor objects, removing potential hazards near structures, and shuttering windows. During high winds, seek shelter, stay away from windows, and avoid elevated areas.
- Travel Safely: Minimize non-essential travel during the storm’s peak. Stay updated on road conditions using the QuickMap app or QuickMap website. Avoid walking, swimming, or driving through floodwaters, adhering to the “Turn Around, Don’t Drown” principle.
- Power Outage Readiness: Inventory essential items relying on electricity, keep devices charged, and plan for alternative power sources like portable chargers or power banks. Ensure every household member has a flashlight, preparing for potential power outages.
The governor’s proactive measures and the state’s comprehensive response plan aim to safeguard residents during this challenging weather event. Stay vigilant and adhere to safety guidelines to navigate the storm’s impacts successfully.