(KTXL) – Pacific Gas and Electric Company began its planned power shutoffs Monday morning as dangerous winds impacted the region.
The utility company confirmed Sunday it would conduct power shutoffs Monday. PG&E said crews will check equipment Tuesday morning, and they hope to have power back on by sometime Tuesday afternoon or evening.
PG&E said portions of 23 counties, which includes just over 24,600 customers and 1,800 medical baseline customers, will be affected by the shutoffs.
The energy shutoffs, branded by PG&E as public safety power shutoffs, are intended to prevent the start of wildfires during dangerous weather conditions.
The National Weather Service warned of fire weather conditions from Sunday to Tuesday, including gusty winds and dry weather.
PG&E provided the following timetable for the shutoffs:
|Estimated Shutoff Time||County|
|4 – 7 a.m.||Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Plumas, Tehama|
|5 – 8 a.m.||Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, Kings, Merced, Monterey, Napa, San Benito, San Joaquin, San Luis Obispo, Shasta, Solano, Stanislaus, Yolo|
|5 a.m. – 1 p.m.||Kern|
|6 – 8 a.m.||Lake, Sonoma|
|6 – 7 p.m.||Santa Barbara|
The utility has also opened multiple Community Resource Centers where customers can charge their phones and access Wi-Fi. A list of centers can be found by clicking or tapping here.
Ryen Apodaca and her family were grateful their power had not gone out. Still, they stopped by a PG&E resource center in Winters Monday afternoon to stock up on food, water and blankets in the event the lights turn off at a moment’s notice.
“Just in case the power does go off, we’re prepared,” Apodaca told FOX40.
“We’re OK on water but electricity, that’s not fun. We have an electric stove — not fun,” she continued. “Mom’s down the street, she has gas.”
While she continues to monitor her electricity status, first responders continue to monitor weather conditions. The high winds left firefighters on high alert.
Firefighters made quick work of a small grass fire off Highway 16 in Yolo County, but PG&E worries a similar fire not quickly contained could balloon into a major blaze.
“Conditions can change or, depending on the amount of damage or repairs we have to make, those can impact the restoration time,” said PG&E representative Megan McFarland. “But we want the power on for our customers, too. We know it’s frustrating.”