Crews fill potholes, clear drains ahead of next winter storm in San Francisco

For most of the day, the Bay Area got a reprieve with sunny skies. 

That meant crews got a lot of work done on Wednesday to prepare for Thursday's atmospheric river. Crews from San Francisco's Department of Public Works scrambled to fill as many potholes as they could before the next round of storms creates new work for them. 

"Potholes, if water gets into the pavement, the pavement can degrade and that's when a pothole forms," said Rachel Gordon from San Francisco's Department of Public Works.

Rain off and on since January has meant a bumper crop of potholes around San Francisco.

"Last month alone we had more than 1,500 hundred potholes filled. This month, more than 300 so far. January more than 1,000," said Gordon.

Crews can fill potholes rain or shine, but a dry day means the work can progress faster. 

"This is a good opportunity, today, when the sun's out, they can get a little more than they can do in the rain," said Gordon.

Public works crews are also focused on the drains along the roads too. 

"So they're taking away any leaves and debris, so the water, when it does rain, can flow down into the drain and really help prevent localized flooding," said Gordon. "We have our tree crews out looking for any precariously hanging branches, so they can get those down."

From roads to roofs, our the first line of defense from the next round of storms. Roofers at Lawson Roofing Company have been scrambling since the first round of storms battered the Bay Area in January. 

"We've been inundated with calls since January, and trying to get to everybody that we can in a timely fashion," said Joe Lawson.

Lawson says many homes in San Francisco and around the Bay Area are suffering from years of deferred maintenance. 

He says with a new storm on the horizon homeowners should do some basic maintenance to prepare. 

"So, when we get a new heavy rain event come through, 90% of the calls that we get are usually related to blocked drainage," said Lawson. "So, the best thing a homeowner can do is to check their gutters, check their down spouts, make sure that water is flowing through that drainage system."

SEE ALSO: North Bay and Peninsula brace for the brunt of the next big storm

The roofing company that spoke with KTVU recommended that homeowners stick to companies that have a long track record so you know they'll be around if there are any problems, and also said to make sure the roofer you get is licensed, insured and bonded and gives you a comprehensive contract.

Also, be patient, there are a lot of people looking to get that repair work done after this unusually wet winter.