EL DORADO COUNTY, Calif. (KTXL) — Hot, dry and gusty conditions could send tens of thousands of Pacific Gas and Electric customers into the dark again this year.
The utility giant warned more than 54,000 customers in 24 counties Tuesday to stand ready in case crews need to pull the plug on electricity starting Wednesday night.
“We understand how difficult PSPS events are on our customers and we know this has been an incredibly challenging year,” said PG&E’s Customer Experience Manager Vanessa Bryan.
The windy conditions are expected to die down on Thursday, with PG&E hoping to restore power to all customers within 12 daylight hours after that happens.
PG&E leaders said planned Public Safety Power Shutoffs in areas where wildfire conditions are ripe are designed to save lives and property.
“Overall, turning off power to our customers is not a decision we make lightly,” said spokesperson Lynsey Paulo. “PSPS events are a tool of last resort used only when the weather events are so severe that people’s safety, their lives, their homes and their businesses may be in danger.”
In places that have already experienced shutoffs over the summer, like El Dorado County, they know what to expect.
“It’s an inconvenience but so is jumping up every Monday and go to work every day, but it’s something that we do,” said El Dorado County resident Tony Moody.
But some homeowners said the periodic outages are making them restless and wish other preventative measures were taken to reduce the fire danger.
“They say it might happen and, like I said, they don’t tell you if it will, in fact, happen in your area,” said resident Sherri Anderson. “So, we just have to kind of play it by ear. So, they do that so many times and we don’t even pay attention anymore.”
“We should be cleaning ourselves up. We should be making sure that we maintain our wildlife and our forests, which I don’t believe we’ve done,” Moody told FOX40.
|County||Customers||Medical Baseline Customers|
|Contra Costa County||929||61|
|El Dorado County||1,654||73|
|San Mateo County||1,683||56|
|Santa Clara County||2,210||103|
|Santa Cruz County||6,024||406|