Electric utility crews from 21 states were deployed to Northern California this week to help Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) restore power following a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) due to extreme wind conditions.
The company said that the latest power shut-off would affect people in 32 counties starting Tuesday morning through midday Wednesday, and warned some customers may experience continuous outages. They included 1 million still without power from a blackout over the weekend.
"I think PG&E's power shutoffs have been a debacle".
This is the third time this month PG&E has cut out the power of its customers, citing a wildfire risk, the SF Chronicle reports. After days of uncontrolled fires burning through the south of the state, fires are expected to worsen on Wednesday as fast-moving Santa Ana winds blast through the region. About 90,000 buildings remained threatened. If there arises a need to evacuate, people need to be prepared. The weather should clear in all areas by mid-day Wednesday. About 9,000 people, including Arnold Schwarzenegger and LeBron James, were under evacuation orders.
PG&E spokeswoman Monica Tell said Tuesday that the utility started cutting power to customers at 5 a.m. Tuesday in the Sierra Nevada foothills.
Mayor Eric Garcetti called it an "act of God".
At this time the National Weather Service does not foresee any weather patterns that would result in a PSPS event in the near future.
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Anger is reportedly on the rise across Northern California as another round of fire-prevention blackouts has been initiated by the state's largest utility on Tuesday, Oct. 29.
No deaths have been reported from the fires but toppled trees have claimed three lives. Forecasts predict the high winds will continue into Monday morning. She has been wearing masks outside and keeping her windows shut.
Sykes, the caterer, is among some people in well-to-do Marin County, north of San Francisco, who have been without power since Saturday.
She ran a cord from her neighbors' generator to keep her phone and tablet charged so the two could watch movies.
The offshore weather event headed toward Northern California Tuesday is expected to be less intense than what was experienced over the weekend. He and others have also complained that the utility has botched the outages by not keeping the public adequately informed.
Gov. Gavin Newsom blasted the company after the October 9 shutoff, demanding they "be held accountable" and provide rebates or credits after leaving thousands in the dark and some customers without power for days. Newsom had suggested $100 per household, or $250 per business.
PG&E continues to support first responders, local agencies, CAL FIRE and the communities in the impacted areas of the Kincade Fire. Johnson did not confirm a figure, saying only, "We agree with his suggestion".