NewsCovering Kern County


Officials discuss safety protocols for driving during the storm

Flooding on Chester October 25, 2021
Posted at 4:14 PM, Oct 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-25 20:30:07-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — The storm Friday caused road closures from the I-5 to Highway 178 and even flooding. Some streets in Bakersfield don’t have storm drains causing water to gather in the area.

During days like Monday, officials said it's important to be extra careful when on the road to prevent crashes.

“It's really important for drivers to remember that we cannot drive like we normally would today when it is sunny,” said Doug Shupe, spokesperson for Automobile Club of Southern California.

Slick roads, flooding, mudslides, and even debris flow, all of these elements can take place when storms hit Kern County.

Flooding at Southgate Drive and Chester Avenue

Shupe said there are some important things drivers need to do to prepare for being on the roads during rainy weather.

“We have to slow down; you also need to make sure you are giving yourself enough room between your vehicle and other vehicles out there on the roadways,” said Shupe.

If you can’t stay home and must be out in the rain, also make sure your vehicle is prepared.

“If you're planning to be out there in this wet weather, make sure that you check your tire tread and inflation, both very crucial to maintaining traction on wet pavement,” said Shupe.

Shupe also said making sure your vehicle is working properly doesn’t just protect you, but also those around you.

“Make sure that you inspect your headlights, your taillights, your turn signals so that you make sure the bulbs are working properly so that other drivers see you,” said Shupe.

If you see flooding on the roads, Andrew Freeborn with the Kern County Fire Department said it’s not worth the risk to drive through it.

KCFD PIO Andrew Freeborn discuss road safety during storms

“Remember if you see a large amount of water that’s flowing across a roadway, don’t try to drive through it, just turn around, don’t drown, there’s no reason to risk that sort of activity,” said Freeborn.

At the end of the day, it is important to take your time on the roads when it's raining.

“The main thing is, just give yourself extra time to get to your destination, you never want to be in a rush, but especially on bad weather days like today,” said Shupe.