Customers Encouraged to Use Online Address Look-up Tool to Confirm If They Will Be Impacted
Historic Wind Event Forecast to Cause Dangerous Conditions Until Midday Monday
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Due to weather forecasts indicating potential for a historic wind event this weekend, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) confirmed it will implement a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) affecting approximately 940,000 customers—an increase of about 90,000 from previous estimates—in portions of 36 counties. Widespread dry, hot and windy weather is expected to begin impacting the service area today between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. and through midday Monday.
As this weather system sweeps from north to south over a period of two to three days, PG&E customers across Northern and Central California will feel the effects of hot, dry winds at different times, which means outage times will vary as well.
Customers are encouraged to visit www.pge.com/eventmaps and use the address look up tool to confirm if they will be impacted by this PSPS event.
Power Will Be Turned Off in Phases
The PSPS will occur in six phases, times may change (earlier or later) dependent on weather. The first phase will begin about 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 26. Customer impacts will include these counties: Amador, Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Glenn, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, San Joaquin, Sierra, Siskiyou, Shasta, Tehama and Yuba.
The second phase will occur around 4 p.m. on Saturday, October 26, impacting customers in the following counties: Lake, Marin, Mendocino (south), Napa, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo.
Phase three will begin about 5 p.m. Saturday, October 26, impacting customers in these counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Monterey, San Benito, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and Stanislaus.
Phase four will begin about 5 p.m. Saturday, October 26, impacting customers in these counties: Alpine, Calaveras, Mariposa and Tuolumne.
Phase five begin about 5 p.m. Saturday, October 26, impacting customers in these counties: Humboldt, Mendocino (north) and Trinity.
The sixth and final phase is scheduled to begin 10 a.m., Sunday, October 27, impacting customers in Kern County.
The power will be turned off to communities in stages, depending on local timing of the severe wind conditions.
OCTOBER 26 PSPS EVENT
The times below are estimates and may change (earlier or later) dependent on weather.
|1||2 P.M. Saturday, Oct. 26||Amador, Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Glenn, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, San Joaquin, Sierra, Siskiyou, Shasta, Tehama, Yuba|
|2||4 P.M. Saturday, Oct. 26||Lake, Marin, Mendocino (south), Napa, Solano, Sonoma, Yolo|
|3||5 P.M. Saturday, Oct. 26||Alameda, Contra Costa, Monterey, San Benito, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Stanislaus|
|4||5 P.M. Saturday, Oct. 26||Alpine, Calaveras, Mariposa, Tuolumne|
|5||5 P.M. Saturday, Oct. 26||Humboldt, Mendocino (north), Trinity|
|6||10 A.M. Sunday, Oct. 27||Kern|
“This wind event is forecast to be the most serious weather situation that Northern and Central California has experienced in recent memory. We understand the widespread impacts this Public Safety Power Shutoff will have across Northern and Central California. We would only take this decision for one reason – to help reduce catastrophic wildfire risk to our customers and communities. There is no compromising the safety of our customers, which is our most important responsibility,” said Michael Lewis, PG&E’s senior vice president of Electric Operations
Customer Notifications and Impact
In most cases, the company has notified potentially impacted customers at 48 hours, 24 hours and just before the de-energization. However, customers not impacted by the PSPS, including those not within high fire-risk areas, may experience power outages due to PG&E equipment damaged during this major wind event. Those customers will not be notified in advance.
It is very possible 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.
The impacted counties, cities and communities are listed below. Customers can go to pge.com/pspsupdates to look up individual addresses to see if they are impacted by this event.
|Contra Costa||Total: 48,058
Medical Baseline: 1,584
|Alamo, Antioch, Brentwood, Byron, Canyon, Clayton, Concord, Crockett, Danville, Diablo, El Cerrito, El Sobrante, Hercules, Kensington, Lafayette, Martinez, Moraga, Orinda, Pinole, Pittsburg, Pleasant Hill, Port Costa, Richmond, Rodeo, San Pablo, San Ramon, Walnut Creek|
Estimated Time of Restoration
Predictive data models indicate the weather event could be the most powerful to hit California in decades, with widespread dry northeast winds between 45-60 mph and peak gusts of 60-70 mph in the higher elevations.
Winds of this magnitude pose a higher risk of damage and sparks on the electric system and rapid wildfire spread. The fire risk is even higher because vegetation on the ground has been dried out by recent wind events.
Before restoring power, PG&E must inspect its equipment for damage and make any necessary repairs. That process cannot begin until the severe weather event has subsided.
Given the prolonged period during which the wind event will unfold, and the large number of power line miles that will need to be inspected before restoration, customers are being asked to prepare for an extended outage of at least two days once the severe weather has passed.
PG&E will work with state and local agencies to provide updated restoration timelines following the conclusion of the severe weather event.
PG&E is opening 56 Community Resource Centers in areas where power will be shut off, and we are looking to add more. These centers will remain open in impacted areas throughout the PSPS to provide water, phone charging stations, air-conditioned seating for up to 100 people and restrooms. To view the current list, click here.
During the PSPS, customers in impacted areas will not be billed. PG&E has paused disconnection and collection activities in these areas.
Customers can visit pge.com/pspsupdates for more information.
How Customers Can Prepare
In addition, PG&E is asking customers to:
- Update your contact information by calling 1-866-743-6589. PG&E will use this information to alert customers through automated calls, texts, and emails, when possible, before and during a Public Safety Power Shutoff.
- Plan for medical needs like medications that require refrigeration or devices that need power.
- Identify backup charging methods for phones and keep hard copies of emergency numbers.
- Build or restock your emergency kit with flashlights, fresh batteries, first aid supplies and cash.
- Keep in mind family members who are elderly, younger children and pets.
- Learn more about wildfire risk and what to do before, during and after an emergency to keep your family safe at PG&E’s Safety Action Center.
While customers in high fire-threat areas are more likely to be affected by a Public Safety Power Shutoff event, any of PG&E’s more than five million electric customers could have their power shut off for safety because the energy system relies on power lines working together to provide electricity across cities, counties and regions.