Storms cause growing mudslide concerns in North Bay fire zones

Lisa Amin Gulezian Image
ByLisa Amin Gulezian KGO logo
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Storms cause growing mudslide concerns in North Bay fire zones
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In the North Bay fire zone, there are concerns over potential mudslides as storms gain strength this week.

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (KGO) -- The rain is causing some officials to be on high alert especially in parts of the north bay, ravaged by last year's fires.

With rain, comes warnings. Santa Rosa recently learned Fountain Grove is at moderate risk for debris slides and mudflows.

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"We know we are susceptible to it," said Santa Rosa Assistant Fire Marshall Paul Owenthal.

Since last October's North Bay fires, which destroyed thousands of homes and impacted so many lives, emergency officials have been planning for the worst while still hoping for the best.

A new alert system will let residents know if weather-related trouble is coming their way.

VIDEO: Tips for how to drive safely on rainy days

Gravel bags now protect 1,400 storm drains in the hardest hit areas.

"They're doing what they're supposed to do, they're catching a lot of debris, the silt, the sediment and allowing the water to go over them or around them, " Owenthal added.

Over the next several days, the rain will soak the region, making life just a bit more challenging.

"We're living in a wet spot," said Santa Rosa resident George Woods. "Mud, soft -- hard to walk in on gravel."

"For those people at the bottom of the hill when you drive through Fountain Grove, you can just see the river of water coming down the street," said Sebastopol Resident Gary Chriss.

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