Here We Go Again... PGE Announces Another Round of Power Shutoffs to Mitigate Wildfire Risk in Northern California
October 23, 2019
179,000 customers in 17 counties will be impacted.
PG&E's outage maps show where the utility company may cut power to California customers to mitigate wildfire risk. Outages could begin on Oct. 23, 2019. PGE
PG&E announced Wednesday morning it's moving forward with power shutoffs for 179,000 Northern California customers to mitigate wildfire risk amid dry, hot, windy weather conditions.
Shutoffs will start Wednesday afternoon and continue into Thursday morning.
"The shutoffs are expected to begin around 2 p.m. in the Sierra Foothills, 3 p.m. in the North Bay counties, and approximately 1 a.m. Thursday in affected areas of San Mateo and Kern counties," PG&E said. "Once the high winds subside, PG&E will inspect the de-energized lines to ensure they were not damaged during the wind event, and then restore power. PG&E will safely restore power in stages as quickly as possible, with the goal of restoring the vast majority of customers within 48 hours after the weather has passed."
The intentional blackout will impact people in 17 counties, mainly in the Sierra Foothills and the North Bay — including Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Kern, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, San Mateo Sierra, Sonoma, Tehama and Yuba.
PG&E also launched a new website dedicated to providing shut-off updates and information: You can visit it here. (Note: The website has been crashing off-and-on. PG&E says it's working on this issue.)
The outage comes at a time of year when the landscape is dry and fires spark and spread easily. Northerly winds are expected to pick up Wednesday evening into Thursday morning in the hills of the East Bay and North Bay, delivering critical fire risk. Winds between 35 and 45 mph with some 55 mph gusts in localized areas are forecast for Sonoma and Napa counties.
The National Weather Service has a Red Flag Warning in effect for the North Bay mountains, valleys and coast, noon Wednesday through 4 p.m. Thursday; the East Bay mountains and valleys, 3 p.m. Wednesday through 4 p.m. Thursday; and the Santa Cruz Mountains, 7 p.m. Wednesday through 4 p.m. Thursday.
- Blue Monster Prep