ROSEVILLE (CBS13) — The latest on the PG&E Public Safety Power Shutoff event.
PG&E said approximately 167,000 customers lost power in targeted outages that began Monday night. Originally, the utility planned to shut off power to 172,000 customers.
The outages come as thousands of firefighters battle wildfires burning for weeks at the same time many of the state’s 40 million residents stay at home because of the coronavirus pandemic. PG&E said winds overnight Monday gusted to 66 mph in some areas.
The Red Flag Warning remains in effect through Wednesday morning. Once the winds calm down, PG&E crews will inspect the power lines in affected areas and then begin restoring power if there is not any damage. They expect to restore power to most areas by Wednesday evening.
The Grass Valley School District will remain closed Wednesday due to the PSPS event. They hope to resume online learning Thursday.
PSPS Update: Red Flag Warning called by @NWS in effect thru Wed AM. During event, there were 5-15% min. humidity levels & wind speeds of 20-30 mph w/ gusts of 50+ mph (locally higher) & peak wind gusts of 66 MPH recorded in PSPS area. (scroll to 11:00) https://t.co/fq0BAqrv51 pic.twitter.com/cVGcnEopOL
— PG&E (@PGE4Me) September 9, 2020
Several other schools have closed for the day due to the power outages.
In El Dorado County, all schools are closed in the following districts: Camino Union, Gold Oak, Pioneer Union and Placerville Union.
Pollock Pines Elementary School District also announced they will be closed on Tuesday.
Nevada Union High School is closed on Tuesday due to the PG&E power shutoff.
The school posted a message on its website announcing the closure for the day, noting that many families in the area are affected by the outages.
PG&E confirmed that they had shut off power to around 172,000 customers in 22 counties as of early Monday morning.
The utility says efforts to turn the power back on can only happen when its daylight out, so they estimate that some customers will be without power at least through 9 p.m. Wednesday evening.
For Public Safety due to Severe Weather, PG&E has Begun Process of Turning Off Power in High Fire-Threat Areas – Strong Winds Expected to Last Through Early Wednesday Morning https://t.co/AOlcxoOAy8 pic.twitter.com/1SdvuxH6FE
— PG&E (@PGE4Me) September 8, 2020
Previous day’s updates below:
Crews shut off power in the foothills Monday night as the winds picked up. In Nevada City, the street went dark just after 10 p.m.
Soon after, outages could be seen on the PG&E Outage Map in nearby Grass Valley, up Highway 49 in Sierra County as well as in Butte and Plumas counties.
The shutoffs are expected to continue throughout the night as the winds increase.
PG&E has begun shutting off power as part of the Public Safety Power Shutoff which will affect customers in 22 counties in the foothills, Sacramento Valley, Northern Sierra and elevated North Bay Terrain.
Diablo winds are forecasted to begin around 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday morning. After the winds die down, crews will inspect the power lines and begin restoring power, PG&E said.
Areas in Placer, Nevada, and Yuba counties are expected to lose power first. You can check current outages and expected shutoff times on the PG&E website.
The following areas are expected to be impacted:
- Alpine County: 572 customers, including 6 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Amador County: 5,319 customers, including 380 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Butte County: 12,920 customers, including 1,079 medical baseline customers, in Butte Meadows, Chico, Oroville, Paradise and unincorporated areas
- Calaveras County: 13,387 customers, including 590 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- El Dorado County: 26,491 customers, including 1,652 medical baseline customers, in Greenwood, Kelsey, Placerville and unincorporated areas
- Humboldt County: 3,013 customers, including 110 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Kern County: 638 customers, including 32 medical baseline customers, in Bakersfield and unincorporated areas
- Lake County: 24 customers, including 0 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Lassen County: 994 customers, including 46 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Mariposa County: 9 customers, including 0 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Napa County: 5,028 customers, including 173 medical baseline customers, in Calistoga, Saint Helena and unincorporated areas
- Nevada County: 23,312 customers, including 1,225 medical baseline customers, in Grass Valley, Nevada City and unincorporated areas
- Placer County: 4,631 customers, including 299 medical baseline customers in Loomis and unincorporated areas
- Plumas County: 10,879 customers, including 458 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Shasta County: 9,902 customers, including 647 medical baseline customers, in Hat Creek, McArthur and unincorporated areas
- Sierra County: 1,098 customers, including 20 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Siskiyou County: 56 customers, including 0 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Sonoma County: 17,690 customers, including 1,120 medical baseline customers, in Santa Rosa and unincorporated areas
- Tehama County: 1,226 customers, including 56 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Trinity County: 1,413 customers, including 73 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
- Tuolumne County: 29,887 customers, including 2,112 medical baseline customers, in Groveland, Sonora, Tuolumne and unincorporated areas
- Yuba County: 2,395 customers, including 183 medical baseline customers, in unincorporated areas
PG&E says it will cut power to approximately 172,000 customers starting Monday night. A Red Flag Warning is set to go into effect at 10 p.m. Monday, according to the National Weather Service.
In anticipation of the elevated fire danger, PG&E said it will begin shutting off power in some areas at 9 p.m., affecting nearly 104,183 customers.
The affected counties include Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, Lassen, Mariposa, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Sonoma, Tehama, Tuolumne, Yuba, Enterprise Rancheria of Maidu Indians, Mooretown Rancheria, Greenville Rancheria, and Tuolumne Rancheria.
The second wave of shutoffs will hit around midnight, affecting 68,079 customers in the following counties: Amador, El Dorado, Humboldt, Lake, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Shasta, Siskiyou, Sonoma, Tehama, Trinity, Tulare, Hoopa Valley Tribe, Karuk Tribe, and Yurok Tribe.
PG&E said in a press conference Monday that it expects to restore power to the affected areas by 7 p.m. Wednesday. Power cannot be restored until after the wind event has finished and crews inspect the power lines in the affected areas.
Click here to look at PSPS event information by county. Shutoff and restoration times are shifting based on the weather.
You can get more updates and check to see if you will be impacted by the PSPS on PG&E’s website.
PG&E is now warning more customers that it may have to turn off power Monday night as hot and windy weather spikes wildfire danger.
The utility says roughly 158,000 customers in 21 counties could be impacted by the Public Safety Power Shutoff as winds move in.
As of early Monday afternoon, customers in the following counties are being notified about the possible shutoffs: Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Humboldt, Kern, Lake, Mariposa, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Sonoma, Tehama, Trinity, Tuolumne and Yuba.
If the shutoffs do in fact happen, they will not only be the first of the wildfire season but also the first during the coronavirus pandemic.
California last saw shutoffs at the end of 2019.
After facing heavy criticism for that first round of shutoffs, PG&E has told regulators that any upcoming outages will go more smoothly.
On top of the potential planned power shutoffs, there’s also the possibility of more rolling blackouts if the state’s power grid becomes overloaded. California’s Independent System Operator issued a Flex Alert from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. Monday as the heatwave is expected to strain the state’s power grid.
No blackouts happened Sunday night because Cal ISO says demand never peaked beyond capacity, but the state is keeping a close eye on Monday’s outlook.
Around 3 million people could be affected by the rolling blackouts.