The Coast News Group

City crews clearing channels of debris

ESCONDIDO — Continuing prevention efforts for El Niño, city crews are hard at work.

In preparation for heavy rains, the city has cleared 27 of 63 flood control channels since work began in September.

According to a press release from the city, a risk-based assessment was conducted to prioritize the order of work.

Crews have cleaned more than 3.5 miles of channels and removed 1,475 tons of vegetation, 890 tons of silt and 18 tons of trash.

The process to remove debris and silt began in 2010 when the city started collecting data to obtain the permits. Applications were submitted to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Regional Water Quality Control Board and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in the summer of 2013. The city received its permits in late August and work began shortly thereafter.

In addition, the permits will allow Escondido’s Public Works Department to re-visit the sites on an annual basis.

The city has also cleaned approximately 5,200 storm drain inlets and outlets.

Finally, the city is holding another emergency preparedness workshop on Wednesday.

The two-hour session will run from 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 9 in the community room at the Police and Fire Headquarters, 1163 N. Centre City Parkway. The event is free to the public, but seating is limited.

Scheduled speakers include Greg Thomas, general manager of the Rincon del Diablo Water District, Alex Tardy of the National Weather Service and city officials Alicia Appel (utilities department) and Jeff Murdock (fire department).

This is the second public workshop for residents as the four speakers also led the first session earlier this month.

El Niño information

For detailed information and safety tips, visit the city of Escondido’s website at and click on the “El Niño preparations” link on the left side of the home page.

Residents can also call the city at (760) 839-4668 to report problem areas.