Bay Area cities enlist help of citizens to keep storm drains clear

SAN LEANDRO, Calif. (KGO) -- San Leandro Public Works employees spent a soggy day clearing storm drains plugged by late season leaves. But they aren't the only ones preventing flooding citizens are adopting drains, which really helps with post-recession staffing levels.

"We're maintaining services even though we have a reduced staff so it really helps us out to have this kind of stuff happening on the local level," said Sally Barros, City of San Leandro Sustainability Manager.

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When you volunteer to Adopt A Drain, you get a bright safety shirt and a medallion marks your adopted drain.

Sign up online here.

Simply rake the leaves, clear the debris, then put it in the proper yard waste or garbage bin at your home.

About 10 percent of the city's 2,500 storm drains have been adopted. The program is in its third year and was funded by a grant. City leaders hope Adopt A Drain continues to grow.

"It's really important for us going forward with climate change. We're going to be seeing much increased precipitation in our city and a combination of sea level rise and inland flooding," said Barros.

Other Bay Area cities have their own Adopt A Drain programs:

San Francisco

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