Overflowing at San Francisquito Creek affects residents near Highway 101, Chaucer Street

Christina Chen, Author

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A Palo Alto resident fills a leaky sandbag at the Palo Alto Airport Terminal. To help residents protects their properties, the City of Palo Alto is providing free sandbags. Sandbags ran out at Mitchell Park around 9 p.m. and only broken sandbags litter the ground at the airport.

The San Francisquito Creek is now receding after an overflow in the Highway 101 neighborhood and near-overflow at Chaucer Street Bridge, according to Palo Alto Police Department’s Facebook page.

The City of Palo Alto website provides a creek level monitor.

An automated phone call from the City of Palo Alto around 8 p.m. advised residents to stay in their homes, take precautions to protect their property and only call 911 if there is a life or death emergency.

Residents can receive free sandbags at the Palo Alto Airport terminal and at Mitchell Park, according to Palo Alto Police Department’s Facebook page. However, the sandbags had already run out at Mitchell Park around 9 p.m. and are beginning to run out at the Palo Alto Airport, according to a person on the scene.

According to the police, Public Works brought a truck with sand and bags to the intersection of Chaucer Street and Palo Alto Avenue around 9:35 p.m. along with staff to help residents fill the bags.

All local roads closed by flooding, which consisted of both directions of the Oregon Expressway underpass, Highway 101 and the westbound portion of Embarcadero Road, have been reopened, according to the Palo Alto Police’s Twitter feed.

The standing water around town has caused some Palo Alto High School students to cancel holiday plans.

“Today, [senior] Andrew Tang and I were suppose to go out to Niketown, but the flooding stopped us from going by car,” senior Samuel Lee said.

But for others, the excess water is less of an inconvenience than a source of excitement.

“I have been driving around a lot today, and many roads have been closed off, which has caused traffic issues in already dangerous conditions,” senior Spencer Carlson said. “But mostly, it’s just fun to drive through the giant puddles.”