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November 7, 2017 > Emergency Action Plan approved

Emergency Action Plan approved

Submitted By Marty Grimes

In a special joint meeting on Friday, November 3, the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors and San Josˇ City Council approved a Joint Creek Emergency Action Plan (EAP), outlining strategies and actions for agency coordination during potential flooding along waterways in San Josˇ.
Water district board chair John L. Varela said, ÒThis is a critical step toward protecting our communities. Joining resources and ensuring clear knowledge and communication will help prevent what we saw last winter. We canÕt control nature, but we can control how prepared we are. The water district and the City have been working hard to establish clear protocols to help keep residents safe.Ó
Mayor Sam Liccardo said, ÒOver the past nine months, weÕve worked diligently to improve our disaster preparedness and response so that we can better protect our residents from flooding in the future. IÕd like to thank the many City and Water District staff who helped to develop this robust plan and implement a number of critical improvements ahead of the upcoming rainy season.Ó
Since April 2017, both agencies have been working on the action plan that guides decision-making, coordination, and communications for all levels of a flood event, beginning with year-round basic level of working on preparations and projects that reduce flood risk.
Concurrent with developing the action plan, both agencies have been carrying out short-term projects to reduce flood risks before the upcoming winter. Additionally, to improve its capability for emergency notification, last spring the City invested in three long range acoustical devices (LRADs); these can be driven through neighborhoods and have the ability to transmit emergency messages at volume that can be heard for roughly one mile and through the walls of buildings.
Last winterÕs flooding was a stark reminder of how the areaÕs weather can unpredictably swing from drought to floods. A silver lining: Data from the February flood has enabled improved modeling for flood stage analysis on Coyote Creek, and this has been enfolded in the new EAP.
The joint staff report and complete EAP document is available at

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