Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske Alert: Sandbags and sand are now available in 5th Council District

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schipske-5th-district sand bagsCouncilwoman Gerrie Schipske, 5th Council District, Long Beach

Alert: Sandbags and sand are now available in 5th Council District at Fire Station 5 on Wardlow in El Dorado Park.

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With powerful storms bearing down on the region, residents and businesses are urged to prepare themselves for the possibility of significant rainfall.

The City is providing sand and bags for residents to make their own sandbags. The public may pick up sand at four fire stations – Fire Station 7, Fire Station 12, Fire Station 13, and Fire Station 14.

Residents must bring a shovel and fill their own sand bags; however, residents with mobility impairments, or seniors who need assistance can obtain filled bags at the Senior Center at El Dorado Park West, 2800 Studebaker Road, and the Long Beach Senior Center, 1150 E. 4th Street.

In addition, the City of Long Beach has prepared a list of important safety tips and emergency phone numbers for residents to access in the event of power outages, downed trees, flooding, etc. Emergency responders train and are prepared to respond to a disaster or other significant incident; however, residents are strongly urged to prepare themselves for a major emergency, with the goal of being able to be self-sustaining for at least 72-hours.

Preparation for the Storm

The City of Long Beach is providing free sand to residents at four Fire Stations.  Residents must bring and use their own shovel (self-service) to get the sand, which is available in large bins outside the following five fire stations:

  • #7              2295 Elm Ave
  • #12            6509 Gundry Ave
  • #13            2475 Atlantic Ave
  • #14            5200 Eliot St.

Sandbags will last as long as they don’t have a hole. If the bags are reusable, residents should keep them for the next major rainstorm. To discard, distribute sand in a flower bed or over a lawn, and then throw away the empty bags.
Do not take sand from the beach. It is illegal to dump sand at the beach, in the gutter or in the storm drain system.  Sand can be returned to the Public Works/San Francisco Yard, 1601 San Francisco Ave.
For information on how to fill sandbags, visit

Important Phone Numbers:

  • In the event of a life-threatening emergency, call 9-1-1.
  • To report flooding or a clogged or blocked storm drain, please call 562.570.2726.
  • To report a fallen tree or limbs, call 562.570.2770. For trees or limbs in City parks, call 562.570.4895 during business hours, or 562.570.3101 after-hours or on weekends.
  • Fallen power lines are extremely dangerous. Report any downed lines to SCE immediately by calling 1.800.611.1911.  Do not touch a downed line or anyone in contact with the line.  Always assume a downed line is live.  For more information, visit and click on the “Safety” tab.
  • Long Beach Gas & Oil Department, 562.570.2140
  • Long Beach Water Department, 562.570.2390
  • City Street Lights/City Light & Power Co.888.544.4868

Safety Tips:

  • Remember to slow down and drive carefully. Please exercise a great deal of caution and patience, and allow yourself plenty of time to get where you are going. Avoid large puddles and do not attempt to cross running water.
  • Stay out of the LA and San Gabriel Rivers and Flood Control Channels due to possible high waters.
  • Beach-goers are advised to avoid local waters for at least 72 hours after the end of rainfall due to the high bacteria and pollution levels from urban runoff.
  • Individuals can monitor the weather on television news, including the Weather Channel 76 on Charter Cable; radio news stations such as KFI 640 AM or KFWB 980 AM; and websites such as In the left hand column, insert a Long Beach zip code, and a local map and report will appear.

Other Useful Information and Websites:

Latest Update — December 20 at noon

From the City Manager:
Our biggest issue was loss of power at Pump Station 5, located at the on-ramp to the 710 North at Willow Street.  Power was lost at approximately 6pm on Sunday night. SCE was notified.  The freeway quickly flooded and was down to one lane in each direction by 8pm.  City staff and Cal Trans responded.  City staff secured a 1500 kW generator on site by 9pm.  The generator had to be manually wired into the pumps to ensure the proper phasing of the circuits.  City staff succeeded in starting the generator and activating the pumps just before 1am Monday morning.  By 4am, the freeway was cleared and open at full capacity.

The weather forecast is for additional rains throughout the week with the heaviest amounts expected Tuesday and Wednesday, as well as high tides around 8am Tuesday and Wednesday.  Staff is working to coordinate efforts to ensure a rapid response to call for service.  Further updates will be provided as warranted.

I will continue to send out email alerts about the storm as I received them. Please do not hesitate to contact my office at: 562 570-6932 if you need assistance.


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