Adopt a Drain
Volunteer to adopt a storm drain. Volunteers keep their storm drain free of debris, improving water quality of the Bay and preventing flooding of their street during a storm.
Volunteers agree to regularly clean their adopted storm drain of leaves and other debris. By cleaning the drain, volunteers help prevent flooding that can cause safety issues for cars, bikes, and pedestrians. Please note that some storm drains may not be eligible for adoption if they are in high traffic areas or in the state’s right of way (e.g. Ashby Avenue). Check out our video and subscribe to our newsletter to learn more.
Recommended materials for maintaining storm drains:
- Rake and/or Scoop
- Trash Bags (provided by the City upon request)
- Safety Vest (provided by the City)
Volunteers should follow the instructions below when cleaning a storm drain:
- Check and clear the drain periodically and especially before a storm.
- Use a rake to remove leaves, trash, and debris from the storm drain opening and gutter. Please do not remove the grate from the storm drain opening as this does not unclog the system and could be hazardous.
- Wear brightly colored clothing so that you are visible to vehicle traffic. Work from the curb or sidewalk if possible.
- Place the material removed into the trash bags provided. Call (510) 981-6620 for trash bag pickup, or to request more bags.
- Place the filled trash bags at the curb for pick up taking care not to block wheelchair ramps, crosswalks, driveways, or sidewalk passage. Use caution when lifting heavy bags. Please do not leave storm drain debris piles or filled bags near the drain.
If you find hazardous materials or a dead animal in the drain, please do not attempt to remove them. Please call one of the numbers listed below:
- If you find hazardous materials such as syringes, please call (510) 981-6620.
- If you find a dead animal in the drain, please call (510) 981-6600.