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SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. Oct. 10, 2019 – On Thursday morning, October 10, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) reported that improving weather conditions in some parts of the areas affected by the Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) have allowed for safety inspections, repairs and restoration in some areas to begin. Approximately 126,000 customers were restored by 6 a.m. Thursday.
There are still currently approximately 600,000 customers without power as a result of the PSPS event, which began on early Wednesday.
- There were no reported fires related to PG&E equipment in the PSPS impact zone.
- As of 6 a.m. Thursday, peak wind gusts — a major factor in the decision to implement a PSPS — have been recorded at 77 mph at Mt. St. Helena West in Sonoma County and 75 mph at Mount Diablo in Contra Costa County since midnight. Both of these areas were de-energized in the PSPS action.
- The company has received many preliminary reports of vegetation-related damage to its equipment in these areas.
- A third phase for portions of Kern County is scheduled for late morning Thursday. Due to changing weather forecasts, PG&E now expects this event to impact approximately 4,000 customers. Earlier forecasts predicted impacts to 40,000 customers in this area.
- Safety inspections, repairs and power restoration will begin in specific areas once a weather “all clear” is given.
- Customers not impacted by the PSPS may experience power outages due to PG&E equipment damaged during this major event.
- Resources standing by to support the restoration include more than 6,300 on-the-ground field personnel and 45 helicopters. Crews will conduct visual inspections and will make repairs as necessary if any damage is found.
- The number of circuit-miles requiring inspection includes nearly 25,000 miles of distribution lines and 2,500 miles of transmission lines, a combined distance measuring longer than a trip around the circumference of the Earth.
“We faced a choice between hardship or safety, and we chose safety. We deeply apologize for the inconvenience and the hardship, but we stand by the decision because the safety of our customers and communities must come first,” said Michael Lewis, Senior Vice President, Electric Operations.
Dangerous weather conditions are expected to continue in parts of the Sierra Foothills and Bay Area until midday Thursday. Similar conditions in Kern County are beginning late morning Thursday and lasting through midday Friday.
For restoration to begin, the company must inspect its affected equipment to ensure no damage has occurred to its equipment. As of 10 a.m., the company has not issued an “all clear” for the Bay Area. Inspection patrols take place during daytime hours.