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Power Shutoffs Possible This Tuesday and Wednesday as Weather Conditions Bring Increased Fire Danger to the Emerald Counties

Pacific Gas and Electric have announced weather patterns in the Northern California region are being monitored for the possibility of a Public Safety Power Shutoff on Tuesday night for some areas, and Wednesday night for others.

According to forecasting published by PG&E Mendocino, Sonoma, and Lake Counties could face a PSPS starting Tuesday. Those and Humboldt, Trinity, Shasta, and other Northern California Counties could see their power cut on Wednesday night.

The PG&E PSPS Forecast for the upcoming week [Check it out here]

PG&E characterized the risk of a PSPS as “elevated” which they define as “An upcoming event (a period of gusty winds, dry conditions, heightened risk) is being monitored for an increased potential of a PSPS event.”

PG&E stated their forecasting suggests an “upper-level weather system will progress through the Pacific Northwest Tuesday into Wednesday and produce dry, northerly winds across Northern CA.”

These winds are expected to increase Tuesday night with the potential for “maximum wind gusts from 30 – 45 mph with isolated gusts to 50 mph.”

As to Wednesday night, PG&E predicts, “Weaker northerly winds are also possible late Wednesday into Thursday.” 

Factors that are enhancing the potential danger in the forecast include relative humidity of 15%-30% and the areas affected being “historically dry” and “very susceptible to new fire ignitions.”

We will continue to monitor PG&E’s PSPS forecasting to bring residents the most up-to-date information about the potential of power outages. 

The following is a list of tips/tricks/wisdom to keep in mind when navigating a Public Safety Power Shutoff:

How to Prepare for the Public Safety Power Shutoff 

  • The following infographic from PG&E details suggested supplies residents should gather to prepare for the PSPS:
  • The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reminds residents, “Remember that gas pumps and ATMs don’t work without electricity. Best to fill up and try to keep your tank at least half full in case of a #PSPS2020Mendo.”
  • This website from FDA.gov provides practical strategies to keep the temperature of your refrigerator and freezer as low as possible during extended power outages.
  • This website from FoodSafety.gov provides a detailed list of food that can be saved and food that must be thrown out after any sort of extended power outage.

Generators 101

  • As residents prepare for the Public Safety Power Shutoff, many will be purchasing or operating a backup power system for their residence or business. We would like to provide some guidance in purchasing and safely utilizing this equipment.
    • To purchase a generator that meets your wattage needs, use this generator calculator to assess your electricity needs and buy the appropriate model.
    • This Wikihow article provides an overview of the set-up, use, and safety precautions of using an electric generator.

How to Monitor the Public Safety Power Shutoff

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