Central Coast could experience power shut offs near end of the week

Oct 23, 2019

The most recent announcement from energy company, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), listed San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Monterey Counties as “elevated” for potential Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events, which could begin Sunday and Monday.

UPDATE 10/25/19 5PM: PG&E announced Friday that it had notified 850,000 customers in 36 counties ranging from the North Coast to the Bay Area and Central Coast of a new round of possible power shut offs beginning Saturday evening. Monterey County is included in the list.  PG&E said 993 customers in Aromas and Salinas may lose electricity.

Forty-nine of those people have special energy needs because of medical conditions. A representative for Monterey County said 70 percent of those medical baseline customers have been notified. There will be a community resource center with electricity available at the Aromas Grange Hall.

Southern California Edison (SCE) announced this week they they are considering turning off power to 240 customers in an unincorporated part of Santa Barbara County west of Goleta, between Gaviota State Park and Jalama Beach County Park, beginning on Friday evening.

PG&E and SCE have both said they may turn off electricity to areas of the state during gusty winds and dry conditions, combined with a heightened fire risk. PG&E shut off power to nearly 2 million people in Northern California earlier in October. On Wednesday it began to cut power to about 179,000 customers in northern California. SCE said they may cut electricity to 300,000 customers in Southern California.

The offices of emergency services for both Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties say they will continue to monitor the situation.

Both power companies recommend keeping your contact information to date, as they plan to send notifications to potentially impacted customer before shut off events. They also recommend residents keep an emergency supply kit on hand, with batteries, flashlights, medication, cash and nonperishable food to last a household one week.