PG&E officials add Kern County to Public Safety Power Shutoff list

A traffic cone sits next to a Pacific Gas & Electric truck on Jan. 17 2019 in Fairfax California

A traffic cone sits next to a Pacific Gas & Electric truck on Jan. 17 2019 in Fairfax California

Because of "strong and dry wind", Pacific Gas and Electric Company, or PG&E, may have to cut power from 30 California counties - including Alameda County - from Wednesday morning through Thursday afternoon.

Counties now under watch include Kern, San Bernardino, Riverside and Los Angeles.

The utility says power could be shut off in parts of almost 30 counties in central and Northern California starting Wednesday and through Thursday, when hot weather and strong winds are forecast.

PG&E's website has gone down Tuesday morning due to what the utility said was a "high volume of traffic" from people looking up information related to a possible public safety power shutoff that could affect an estimated 600,000 customers. "We want our customers to be aware that, based on this number, it could take several days to fully restore power after the weather passes and safety inspections are completed".

The plan is to throw the switches at 4 a.m. October 9 which could affect millions of people in almost 30 northern, central, coastal, and Bay Area counties.

"This is shaping up to be one of the most severe dry-wind events we've seen in our territory in recent years, and we want our customers to be prepared for an extended outage that may last several days", Michael Lewis, senior vice president for PG&E Electric Operations, said in a statement.

The public safety power shutoff would span across northern, central, coastal and Bay Area counties, the utility company said. The facilities will have restrooms, bottled water, electronic-device charging, and a/c seating for up to 100 residents.

"We do not have any information from PG&E about what areas or how many customers may be impacted", the post states. The Nov. 8 blaze was started by PG&E power lines.

"This has the potential to be the strongest offshore wind event of the year", the weather service said. Some locations require workers to travel on narrow access roads.

Isolate and Repair Damaged Equipment: Where equipment damage is found, crews will work to isolate the damaged area from the rest of the system so other parts of the system can be restored.

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