Flood Preparedness

The risk of catastrophic floods exists every year, and heavy downpours often lead to dangerous flooding conditions. Wildfires add another layer of risk during the rainy season because dangerous landslides and debris flows can rush down fire-scarred hillsides. Because flooding can occur anywhere throughout the state, it is important for Californians to assess their flood risk, prepare and practice response plans, and learn from past floods. We assist with flood activities, and through collaboration with federal agencies are improving our understanding of atmospheric rivers and their effects on flooding and water supply.

DWR's role in flood preparedness includes:

  • Working with communities to improve community safety and lower insurance premiums for residents
  • Holding preseason briefings for emergency responders to learn about resources and coordinate with other local agencies to prepare for flood season
  • Conducting meetings with flood emergency response partners and county emergency operation officials throughout the state
  • Providing training in effective flood fighting methods for mitigating a flood
  • Activating our Flood Operations Center when flooding is imminent or occurring to coordinate response between local agencies and provide technical assistance as requested
  • Providing grant funding for flood management projects, emergency preparedness, feasibility studies, Delta-specific and other state projects, and forecast-coordinated operations in the Central Valley

How You Can Prepare for Floods

Visit Flood Preparedness Week to know your risk and "Flood Prepare California!"

Use the information and tools to:

  • Figure out their risk of flooding at home and while traveling
  • Learn what food and supplies are needed to shelter at home during a flood
  • Determine what you should take with you if evacuating


  • Best Available Maps (BAM)  represent the 100- and 200-year composite floodplains located within the Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley watershed.

Contact Us

Email us with questions.

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