Updated Tuesday, Nov. 19, 6:31 p.m.
Pacific Gas and Electric will shut off power again to customers in the Sierra Foothills, North Valley and North Bay this week because of possible fire weather.
PG&E Incident Commander Mark Quinlan said Tuesday evening the utility will start shutting off power to around 150,000 customers — around 450,000 people — starting at 7 a.m. Wednesday. He said the utility expects to be able to begin inspections to turn power back on Thursday morning.
Here's when PG&E expects to turn off power in different regions:
- North Bay (Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Solano, Sonoma, Yolo): 7 a.m.
- Central Sierra Foothills (El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sierra, Yuba): 7 a.m.
- North Valley (Shasta, Tehama): 8 a.m.
- North Valley (Glenn): 9 a.m.
- Northern Sierra Foothills (Butte, Plumas, Tehama, Yuba): 4 p.m.
- Some parts of Sonoma County: 4 p.m.
The number of affected customers is down from an estimate of more than 300,00 earlier in the week.
The National Weather Service says dry weather early this week will be followed by gusty winds Wednesday into Thursday for parts of Northern California, potentially increasing the risk of fires.
Hundreds of homes were destroyed this fall by large wildfires across the state. Last month, PG&E shut-off power to millions of people to try and prevent its equipment from sparking wildfires amid dry weather and historically strong winds.
Carla Hass with El Dorado County also says cold will be factor for this shut off, as temperatures drop sharply at night.
“We’re looking at the high 40s in the lower parts of El Dorado County and then in the southern Lake Tahoe area, we’re looking at freezing temperatures,” she said.
PG&E began a policy of cutting power to prevent fires in October of last year, one month before the Camp Fire killed 84 people in Butte County. That fire has since been blamed on PG&E equipment, which the utility decided not to shut off in the hours preceding it.
PG&E customers can sign up for updates and monitor updates from the utility on its website.
This is a developing story. We will provide updates when more information becomes available.