Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) confirmed this morning that customers in the Sierra Foothills, Northern Sierra and elevated North Bay terrain who were notified of an impending Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) are now without power.
The PSPS event is affecting approximately 172,000 customers in 22 counties: Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Humboldt, Lake, Lassen, Mariposa, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Sonoma, Tehama, Trinity, Tuolumne and Yuba. The process to turn off power to these counties was completed between approximately 9:00 p.m. Monday evening and 6:00 a.m. Tuesday morning. Power will be shut off in Kern County at approximately 2 p.m. Tuesday.
PG&E only undertakes a PSPS as a last resort, when it is necessary to do so to protect public safety from extreme wildfire threat.
This PSPS decision was based on forecasts of dry, hot weather with strong winds that pose significant fire risk. The National Weather Service has placed most of Northern and Southern California, including 1.5 million PG&E customers, under Red Flag Warnings for fire danger. Forecasts indicate that the peak period of winds should end Wednesday morning.
Once the weather subsides and it is safe to do so, PG&E crews will begin patrolling power lines, repairing damaged equipment and restoring customers. In the area impacted by the PSPS, PG&E will need to conduct safety inspections of approximately 10,625 miles of transmission and distribution lines, which is equivalent to twice the distance from San Francisco to Tokyo.
Restoration activities can only take place during daylight hours, so it’s likely that some customers may not be restored until 9:00 p.m. Wednesday evening.
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 23,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation's cleanest energy to 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit pge.com and pge.com/news.