Storm chances rise, Phoenix area preps for flooding with free sand
PHOENIX — Cities in the Valley were trying to head off trouble, offering free sandbags to residents before monsoon season flooding flows through the streets.
Officials in Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe said sand, bags and shovels were already available for residents to make their own flood barriers.
Some cities might need sandbags more than others over the next several days.
Meteorologist Mark O’Malley of the National Weather Service in Phoenix said sporadic rain was expected to fall Friday, but the weekend and early into next week was going to be a different story.
“There are some people who could see an inch of rain (Friday) and 5 miles down the road, literally nothing … but we are looking at a much better shot Saturday and Sunday.”
The chance for thunderstorms Saturday night were 30 percent and jumped to 40 percent Sunday night. The likelihood of more storms Monday were also at 40 percent. By Tuesday the number dropped to 30 percent.
Free sand and bags will be available at three sites in Scottsdale and at two in Tempe. The city of Phoenix’s severe-weather response plan was a more mobile program — residents will have to wait for notices of where thew sand will be.
Instead of making sand available at fire stations, Phoenix’s sand was to be delivered to specific parks ahead of large expected storm systems. The exact park sites will be posted online and on social media.
Residents must bring their own bags and shovels.
Scottsdale’s sand and bags are available 24 hours a day at:
• Police station parking lot, 7601 E. McKellips Road
• Corporation Yard, 9379 E. San Salvador
• Sold Waste Transfer Station, 8417 E. Union Hills Drive
Bags were limited to 10 per household. Experts said the maximum bags should be filled was two-thirds.
• Near Rio Salado Parkway and Hardy Drive
• Benedict Sports Complex parking lot, 490 W. Guadalupe Road
Other cities making sand available include Mesa.
Monsoon season begins June and ends Sept. 15.
KTAR’s Jim Cross contributed to this report.