PG&E may shut off power Wednesday to 180,000 homes, businesses

Utility says that shutoffs last month successfully prevented potential ignitions.

Another possible power shutoff could affect 180,000 homes and businesses in Northern California if winds pick up on Wednesday, utility Pacific Gas & Electric said Sunday.

"Both the forecast and the scope of the weather event remain very fluid three days ahead of the event," PG&E said. "At present, projections reflect a possible weather event similar to previous PSPS events that impacted about 180,000 customers."

The utility said customers in the Sierra Foothills, North Valley and North Bay may be affected.

California regulators voted unanimously last week to investigate PG&E over multiple planned power shutoff events in the state to assess whether it is appropriately balancing the need to provide safe and reliable service when initiating the outages.

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The evaluation will provide a comprehensive review of the effectiveness and impact of the power shutoff events – which were intended as a precaution to prevent equipment from starting fires.


Meanwhile, PG&E said Friday that the 116 incidents of damage or hazards found after record-breaking winds in October mean that the company successfully prevented potential ignitions.

This remote-camera photo posted on the Ventura County Fire Department's Twitter page shows the beginning of the Maria fire at an antenna farm atop South Mountain near Santa Paula, Calif., Thursday evening, Oct. 31, 2019. (Ventura County Fire Departme

Millions of people were without power — some for several days — as a result of multiple planned power shutoffs last month amid windy weather conditions that stoked fears about igniting new wildfires.

Newsom said at the end of October that the utility would begin crediting customers who had their service disrupted. Newsom has also said that 2019 has not been a particularly bad year for fires compared to previous years.

FOX Business' Brittany De Lea contributed to this report.