CSUN Prepares for Upcoming El Niño

  • CSUN is preparing for an increased amount of rainfall in early 2016. Photo by Lee Choo.

In preparation for the intense rainfall that is expected in the region from the weather phenomenon El Niño, Physical Plant Management (PPM) staff at California State University, Northridge are taking steps to prepare the campus.

El Niño is an irregularly occurring climactic change that is characterized by uncharacteristically warm ocean temperatures. Similar to the last heavy El Niño that occurred during the winter of 1997–98, CSUN is expected to receive heavy rains in January and February.

“Like much of Los Angeles, [CSUN] was hit hard by the last El Niño, however, we fared a little better due to our preparation and a staff of dedicated custodians, trades and grounds workers who are available and supportive of the campus’ needs,” said Jason Wang, senior director for PPM. “The biggest change we have done since the previous storm is re-roofing some of our older buildings, including Jacaranda and Eucalyptus Halls.”

PPM also has replaced wooden pedestrian bridges with new metal versions, which will help students cross streets when water levels rise in the gutters, Wang added.

Other steps PPM has taken to prepare for the storm include removing foliage and debris from campus roofs, removing all potential roof-drainage blocking hazards and verifying that all critical electrical infrastructure have no issues.

Wang advised students, faculty and staff to immediately report issues they see on campus when it rains.

“[Students, faculty and staff] can help CSUN by reporting issues such as leaky windows, roofs or structures,” Wang said. “Also, be prepared on a personal level to ensure your home, property and family are safe.”

PPM’s mission is to provide students, faculty and staff with a safe, clean, inviting and engaging campus environment that supports the academic, student development and sustainability mission of CSUN.

To report rain-related or other issues, contact Physical Plant Management at (818) 677-2222.