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How the Valley prepared for this storm (or didn't)

If you want sandbags, it's not too late to get them.

Rain is entering the Valley. We are expecting the heavy stuff to start late Tuesday evening, so there’s still time for some last-minute preparations. 

There are a number of things you can do to prep for the storms headed our way and help prevent flash flooding, including filling up sandbags. Tempe Compost Yard has them for free. All you got to do is bring a shovel and maybe a helper. 

Pancho Lechuga, an employee there, said there were a couple of people who picked up sandbags.

He says don’t fill your sandbags all the way up. Halfway to two-thirds is just right, because overfilled bags are too firm and create a leaky sandbag wall. 

“I got the sandbags at my house ready to go,” Lechuga said.  

Homeowners are also going to want to clean out their gutters, and typically trim back any trees that may be overhanging their home. But according to a foreman with Whitfill Nursery in Phoenix, that may not be necessary for this storm. He and his colleagues are tracking the storm closely. 

“As far as we can tell right now, it’s not supposed to be windy like a monsoon season in the summer, so that, that’s a good thing,” P.J. Ball with Whitfill Nursery said.  

He says he doesn’t become nervous about weaker trees being broken until winds speeds exceed 25 mph.

“Hopefully, we get a good amount of steady rain,” Ball said, “and that’s perfect for this time of year. It’s awesome. We normally do get a rain close or before Thanksgiving anyway. And you know just be happy for the trees and the plants and let them take it in…look forward to it.”

RELATED: Updates: Storms bring heavy rain, lightning and blowing dust across Arizona

Where can I get free sandbags?


Residents should bring their own shovels to fill the bags.

- 3 Star Park, 15825 N. Jerry Street (south side parking area off of Jerry Street)

- Bell Road Lake (south side), 15105 W. Bell Road

- Water Well Site, 16849 W. Jomax Road

- Westgate City Facility, 13430 W. Westgate Drive

- Ashton Ranch Water Supply Facility,15151 W. Greenway Road

- AZ TechCelerator,12425 W. Bell Road

- Fire Station 302,18600 Reems Road


- Fire Station 1 (2730 E Williams Field Rd)

- Fire Station 3 (1011 E Guadalupe Rd)

- Fire Station 9 (3355 E Ocotillo Rd)