Flood Control

Free Sand Bags

With climate change upon us, atmospheric rivers are growing larger, and the heavy rains and storms that they bring are growing stronger and lasting longer than in years past. Some residents in Nanaimo may see flooding at their property as a result.

At the City of Nanaimo, we can't stop the rain from coming, but we can offer sand bags to help divert pooling water. Sand and fillable sand bags are free for residents and available at the Public Works Yard at 2020 Labieux Rd. Bring a shovel and ties; this is a do-it-yourself service. Please only take what you need.

This video offers a quick demonstration of how to fill your sand bag and where at the Public Works Yard to find the bags and the sand pile.


Sand Bag Support - Helping Our Neighbours

When the extreme rain events of November 2021 came and caused extreme flooding in BC, the City of Nanaimo was able to offer support. The City's Public Works and Emergency Management departments supported the shipment of over 250,000 sandbags from Duncan to Tahsis, helping their fight against flooding. 

4 sandbags stand filled on a sand pile


Clearing Storm Drains

Whether storm drains are blocked by fallen leaves, snow, or debris, you can help keep the water from flooding in your neighbourhood by clearing the storm drains/catch basins on your street. 


Remember, storm drains/catch basins drain directly to the ocean, so only rainwater should flow into them. For a list of locations that accept paints, chemicals and more, check out our What Goes Where Tool on our website or in the app (download at the Google Play Store or Apple's App Store).


Last updated: August 9, 2023

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