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Lompoc readies for major El Niño storms with help from the state

California Department of Water Resources

The City of Lompoc wants to make sure flood waters are controlled, if and when winter storms hit. 

  The latest information from climatologists with NOAA shows a 95 percent chance for a very wet winter driven by an El Niño of record-breaking strength.

Employees of the Lompoc Fire and Public Works Departments will learn some of  the most effective ways to control flood waters, during an all-day training session on Tuesday.

Fire Chief Kurt Latipow said Monday, the focus will be on sandbagging methods, including building berms, safety, erosion control and home protection.

The Chief said in order to prepare for a city-wide flood plan, he sat down with staff members who were in the area during the last large El Niño season.

"We broke out a map and identified areas of concern from '97 and '98," said Latipow. "Obviously we are focusing on the entire city, but in particular those areas where we had problems before."

The training, as well as supplies used to fight flood waters, are being provided by the State of California Department of Water Resources at no cost to the city.

The City of Lompoc has designed a "Storm Ready" section of its website that the chief hopes residents will now use.