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PG&E Has Turned Off Power for Safety in Portions of 15 Counties in Sierra Foothills and North Bay

Power Shutoffs Also Expected to Impact about 1,000 Customers in San Mateo and Kern Counties around 1:00 a.m. Thursday; PG&E's Emergency Operations Center is Monitoring an Additional Dry, Offshore Wind Event this Weekend

Release Date: October 23, 2019
Contact: PG&E External Communications (415) 973-5930

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) confirmed today that it has implemented a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) in 15 counties in the Sierra Foothills and North Bay—Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sierra, Sonoma, Tehama and Yuba—impacting about 178,000 customers in those areas.

Power shutoffs are planned for portions of San Mateo County, affecting about 1,000 customers, and Kern County, affecting about 30 customers, and are expected to begin around 1:00 a.m. Thursday.

In total, the current PSPS is expected to impact approximately 179,000 customers in 17 counties. It is possible that additional customers not impacted by PSPS may experience power outages due to PG&E equipment damaged during the wind event; those customers will not be notified in advance. For a list of impacted customer counts and cities per county, see pge.com/pspsupdates.


Customer Notifications

PG&E notified potentially impacted customers via automated calls, texts and emails—for those customers who’ve provided their contact information:

  • Monday, October 21 (48 hours prior);
  • Tuesday, October 22 (24 hours prior); and
  • Again today (0 to 4 hours prior).

Reasons for a PSPS

The sole intent of a PSPS is to prevent a catastrophic wildfire sparked by electrical equipment during extreme weather events. This PSPS decision was based on forecasts of dry, hot and windy weather, which poses a higher risk for damage and sparks on the electric system as well as rapid wildfire spread.

It is very possible that customers may be affected by a power shutoff even though they are not experiencing extreme weather conditions in their specific location. This is because the electric system relies on power lines working together to provide electricity across cities, counties and regions.


All-Clear, Safety Inspections and Restoration

Forecasts indicate the peak period of winds should end about noon Thursday in the Sierra Foothills, North Bay and San Mateo County, and around noon Friday in Kern County.

Once the high winds subside, PG&E crews will inspect the de-energized lines to ensure they were not damaged during the wind event. PG&E will then safely restore power in stages as quickly as possible, with the goal of restoring the vast majority of customers within 48 hours after the weather has passed.

In the area impacted by the PSPS, PG&E will need to conduct safety inspections of more than 8,000 miles of distribution lines and nearly 650 miles of transmission lines—the combined equivalent distance of two roundtrips from Chico to Chicago. Resources standing by to support the inspections and restoration include nearly 6,000 on-the-ground field personnel and 42 helicopters.

"The safety of our customers and the communities we serve is our most important responsibility, which is why PG&E has decided to turn power off to customers during this severe wind event. We understand the effects this event will have on our customers and appreciate the public’s patience as we do what is necessary to keep our communities safe and reduce the risk of wildfire," said Michael Lewis, PG&E’s senior vice president of Electric Operations.


Monitoring and Preparing for Potential PSPS This Weekend

PG&E is also monitoring and preparing for an additional wind event starting Saturday, October 26, which may require further shutoffs. Early forecasts show that this has the potential to be widespread across PG&E’s service area in Northern and Central California with significant winds.

PG&E encourages customers currently without power to recharge phones and devices and restock emergency kits during periods of restored power. PG&E will provide more information about this potential event as it has a clearer view of the weather.


Current Community Resource Centers

To support customers in the affected areas, PG&E will open several Community Resource Centers. Restrooms, bottled water, electronic-device charging and air-conditioned seating for up to 100 will be available at these facilities. Locations are below, and more are being confirmed. View the most updated list of center locations at pge.com/pspsupdates.

The following centers are scheduled to open at 8 a.m. Thursday and stay open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. for the remainder of the shutoff:

COUNTYCITYSITE NAMEADDRESS
Alpine Bear Valley Bear Valley Transportation Center 132 Bear Valley Road
Amador Jackson St. Katharine Drexel Catholic Parish 11361 Prospect Drive
Amador Pioneer Mace Meadows Golf Course 26570 Fairway Drive
Butte Chico Costco – Butte 2100 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway
Butte Magalia Strip Mall 14144 Lakeridge Court
Butte Oroville Bird Street School 1421 Bird Street
Calaveras Arnold Meadowmont Shopping Center 2182 Highway 4
Calaveras Murphys Black Bart Players 580 South Algiers Street
El Dorado Georgetown Buffalo Hill Center 6023 Front Street 37
El Dorado Placerville Former County Sheriff's Office 300 Fair Lane
El Dorado Pollock Pines Knotty Pine Lanes 2667 Sanders Dr #1
Lake Lakeport Konocti Vista Casino 2755 Mission Rancheria Road
Lake Middletown Twin Pine Casino & Hotel 22223 CA-29
Napa Calistoga Calistoga Fairgrounds 1435 North Oak Street
Napa Saint Helena Saint Helena Catholic School 1255 Oak Avenue
Nevada Grass Valley Sierra College – Grass Valley 250 Sierra College Drive
Nevada Penn Valley Penn Valley Community Church 11739 Spenceville Road
Nevada Nevada City Nevada City Elks Lodge 518 State Highway 49
Placer Auburn Gold County Fairgrounds 209 Fairgate Road
Placer Forest Hill Canyon View Assembly Church 23221 Forest Hill Road
Placer Lincoln McBean Pavillion Parking Lot 75 McBean Park Drive
San Mateo La Honda La Honda Fire Brigade 8945 La Honda Rd
Sonoma Cloverdale Cloverdale Citrus Fair 1 Citrus Fair
Sonoma Santa Rosa Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building 1351 Maple Avenue
Sonoma Sonoma Hanna Boys Center 17000 Arnold Drive
Yuba Oregon House Alcouffe Center 9185 Marysville Road
Calaveras West Point Veterans of Foreign Wars post 3322 202 Spink Road
Mendocino Potter Valley Potter Valley Bible Church 10151 Main Street

Generator safety

  • Backup electric generators can be a part of any preparedness plan, but they can also pose unique safety hazards.
  • It's important to understand how to safely operate your generator before an emergency occurs. This means doing regular safety checks and being sure you have enough fuel to last a few days. If you don't understand how to use your generator, you risk damaging your property, endangering your life and endangering the lives of others.
  • Position your generator where its exhaust can vent safely to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, which can be fatal. Never run a portable generator in the garage or in the rain, and never store generator fuel in the house.
  • Additional tips on the safe use of generators can be found at PG&E's Safety Action Center at www.safetyactioncenter.pge.com.

About PG&E

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric energy companies in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation's cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit pge.com and pge.com/news.

 

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