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Office of Emergency Management



  • Watch for flying debris. Tree limbs may break and street signs may become loose during strong wind gusts. Keep an eye toward nearby balconies for loose objects that may fall.
  • Take cover next to a building or under a shelter. Stand clear of roadways or train tracks, as a gust may blow you into the path of oncoming vehicles.
  • Use handrails where available on outdoor walkways and avoid other elevated areas such as roofs without adequate railing.
  • Avoid anything that may be touching downed lines, including vehicles or tree branches. Puddles and even wet or snow covered ground can conduct electricity in some cases. Warn others to stay away.
  • Do not touch anyone who has been shocked who may be in direct or indirect contact with a power line. You may be a second victim. Get medical attention as quickly as possible by calling 911.

At Home

If you don’t have to go out, stay home.

  • Secure or bring inside all lawn furniture and other outside objects that could become a projectile in high winds.
  • During the storm, draw blinds and shades over windows. If windows break due to objects blown by the wind, the shades will prevent glass from shattering into your home. Remain a safe distance from windows.
  • If your garage has an electric door opener, locate the manual release lever and know how to operate it.
  • Keep pets inside and ensure they have shelter from the wind.
  • Prepare a kit with a flashlight, batteries, bottled water, non-perishable food, blankets and warm clothing, emergency phone numbers, a first aid kit and other items you might need if power is out for several days.
  • Stock up on shelf-stable foods such as canned goods, juices, peanut butter, energy bars, trail mixes and "no-freeze" entrees.
  • Plan ahead ways to keep foods cold. Buy some freeze-pack inserts and keep them frozen. Buy a cooler. Freeze water in plastic jugs or containers or store bags of ice.
  • Install surge protectors and/or battery systems for computers.
  • Do not run generators, gas grills, or other carbon monoxide producing equipment indoors while power is out.
  • Stay away from chain link fences around down power lines. They can be electric conductors.
  • Most mobile/manufactured homes are not built to withstand severe wind conditions. If informed by city officials, evacuate to a safer location.

In The Car

  • Driving is extremely difficult and dangerous in high winds especially for high-profile vehicles such as busses, trucks, vans, and RVs.
  • Use extreme caution around downed trees and power lines. Assume any down power line is live.
  • If a line falls on your car, stay inside the vehicle. Take care not to touch any part of the metal frame of your vehicle. If vehicle catches fire, open the door, but do not step out. Jump, without touching any of the metal portions of the car's exterior, to safe ground and get quickly away.
  • Slow down for debris in the street.
  • Be aware of City workers clearing debris and working to restore power.
  • Treat all non-working traffic signal lights at intersections as stop signs.
  • Slow down for traffic officers at intersections with non-working signal lights. 

City of Santa Monica © 2020

200 Santa Monica Pier, Suite J, Santa Monica, CA 90401