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Flood shelter moves from Manteca to Stockton fairgrounds
airport couit
Homes —purposely built off ground due to being in a high risk flood zone — are shown south of Manteca on Airport Court after the San Joaquin River reached flood stage earlier this month. The homes are on the river side of the levee.

Starting today, those that have been evacuated due to rising flood waters will have a new temporary home.

On Thursday the San Joaquin County Office of Emergency Services announced that the temporary shelter that had been setup at the Manteca Senior Center will be moving on Friday to the San Joaquin County Fairgrounds in Stockton – meaning those living either at Haven Acres or on Airport Court and needing temporary shelter will be transitioning to South Stockton.

According to the agency, the Manteca Senior Center only had a maximum capacity of 60 residents that were impacted by the evacuation orders. Since the high-water scenario has not dissipated and the potential for future evacuations remains – Turtle Beach Resort, for example, is currently under an evacuation warning – the OES advanced planning unit determined that additional shelter locations capable of holding more people would be prudent.

“Thank you to Manteca Senior Center for opening their location to evacuees during the first evacuation warning and orders,” San Joaquin County OES Director Tiffany Heyer said. “Our County Office of Emergency Services looks forward to the partnership with Stockton Fairgrounds to ensure a long-term solution for evacuees impacted by the hazardously high-water levels from the San Joaquin River.”

Communities like Haven Acres and Airport Court – both areas that have been evacuated by officials in San Joaquin County – are located on the river side of the levee in their respective areas. When the San Joaquin River swells in particularly wet years – especially when large quantities of water are dumped to make room for a massive snowpack – those communities are often inundated with water.

In the case of Airport Court, the homes – referred to as “cabins” by some residents – are constructed with the garage downstairs and the living quarters on the second story because of the penchant for flooding in wet years.

The San Joaquin River from the Deepwater Channel in Stockton to the Stanislaus County line is currently closed to all recreational boating traffic because of the impact that wakes can have on levees that are already under tremendous strain. In Fresno County over the weekend a group of rafters were all fined $225 each after they were spotted by a sheriff’s department helicopter in the closed section of the river.

The shelter is being operated as a joint effort between the San Joaquin County OES and the American Red Cross. The new shelter will be housed in Building 1 at the San Joaquin County Fairgrounds – located at 1658 S. Airport Way in Stockton. To get there from Manteca take Airport Way north and make a right turn into the parking lot just before Charter Way.

For additional information about shelter sites or possible evacuations, San Joaquin County residents can text “SJStorms” to 888777 for real-time information updates. Information can also be found by visiting the San Joaquin County Office of Emergency Services website at or by viewing the agency’s Perimeter Map – which is constantly updated in real time – at

To contact Bulletin reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.