SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Pacific Gas & Electric says it will begin shutting off the power to about 150,000 customers in 18 Northern and Central California counties on Wednesday to avoid the risk of its equipment sparking catastrophic wildfires.
The utility announced Tuesday evening that it reduced the footprint of the planned blackouts despite projected dry, windy red-flag conditions of extreme fire danger in the northern San Francisco Bay Area, California’s wine country and the Sierra foothills.
The earliest outages will start around 6 a.m. Wednesday.
PG&E says it expects to get the all-clear Thursday morning to start restoring electricity.
The country’s largest utility has hit California with a series of massive outages, including one last month for nearly 2.5 million people that outraged local officials and customers.
PG&E officials say they’re aware of the disruption but outages are a public safety matter.