Storm preparation for small businesses

Starting on Wednesday, January 4th, the National Weather Service is predicting strong winds and heavy rain. San Francisco is expecting downed power lines, trees, and localized flooding.
January 03, 2023

Get prepared: 

If your business is in a flood prone area, there are things you can do to lessen the impact of major rain and winds:  

  • Get sandbags: pick them up for free at the Department of Public Works’ operations yard at 2323 Cesar Chavez 
  • Bring in, or secure, outdoor furniture 
  • Raise inventory and/or equipment off the ground. If you store boxes or inventory stacked on the ground, move them to tabletops or carts 
  • Ensure that you and your employees have what they need in case the power goes out, such as flashlights, charged mobile devices, and extra batteries 
  • Sign up for AlertSF by texting your Zip Code to 888-777 for real-time emergency alerts 

During the storm: 

  • Stay away from flooded areas and downed power lines whether in car or on foot 
  • Do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water 
  • Call 311 to report flooding and clogged storm drains 
  • ONLY call 911 for life-threatening emergencies, not to report flooding issues 

After the storm: 

If your business is flooded during rains on New Year's Eve or this week, here are some steps you can take: 

  • Make a record of your business losses by take photos and videos of damage  
  • Contact your insurance provider and/or landlord
  • Reach out to the Office of Small Business at or 415-554-6134. Small business specialists can refer you to advisors, financial options, permitting help, and more. 

Stay informed:

Tune-in to KCBS (740 AM or 106.9 FM), local TV channels, or social media (@sf_emergency; @sfwater; @sfpublicworks; @sfdph ) for emergency advisories and instructions. 

Sign up for the Office of Small Business monthly newsletter for more updates and opportunities for small businesses.