With a monster El Niño still forecast, here’s how you can prepare

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The September El Niño forecast continues to point to the possibility of a monster climate event, according to the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center.

Climate scientists say there is a 95% chance that El Niño will continue through the winter months, which is essential to bring increased rainfall to California.

While any increased rainfall is desperately needed to help the state’s drought, it also has the potential to hurt by bringing too much rain too quickly causing mudslides, landslides and coastal erosion.

“What happens this winter is definitely going to be interesting,” Stanford University climate scientist Daniel Swain told the Times. “And it’s not entirely clear whether California wins or loses.”

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, there are a several things you can do now to prepare for flooding from a strong El Niño:

· Clear drains, rain gutters and downspouts of debris.
· Take a household inventory. For insurance purposes take photos of your possessions (furniture, collectibles, electronics) and store the pictures along with your important documents outside of your home, such as a safety deposit box.
· Make copies of all your important documents, such as finance records and receipts of major purchases.
· Have a plan to protect your pets.
· Get flood insurance. If you already have it, check your policy to make sure you have enough coverage.