As you know, we are reaching the peak of fire season and PG&E has been making public notifications about the possibility of power shutoffs and the impacts they could have on local areas. At this time, none of our school sites are affected. We are not scheduled to have any loss of power. We are monitoring closely and will communicate with families and school site staff as soon as we hear from PG and E and will send out auto-dialer calls and post on social media. Please refer to this FAQ sheet for additional information.
POSSIBLE PG&E POWER SHUTOFFS FAQ
What are preventive power shutoffs?
California’s investor-owned electric utilities, including PG&E, may shut off electric power, referred to as “de-energization” or Public Safety Power Shut-offs (PSPS), to protect public safety. In the PSPS program, power may be cut on transmission and distribution lines in ﬁre-prone areas when the risk of wildﬁre is deemed to be high.
Who determines when shutoffs will occur?
Each utility will decide whether to de-energize their lines based on a set of criteria in their wildﬁre prevention plan. For example, PG&E says it will consider shutoffs at humidity at or below 20 percent, average wind speed forecasts at 20 mph or higher, forecast wind gusts of 40 mph or higher, and ﬁeld observations of dry fuel and live vegetation in the area of concern.
How long will shutoffs last?
PG&E suggests preparing for outages that could last longer than 48 hours as extreme weather conditions are variable.
Who will be affected by shutoffs?
Electricity customers in ﬁre-prone areas are most likely to be affected. Please see the link to ﬁre risk maps here. Due to the interconnected nature of the power grid, any electricity customer may be affected by power shutoffs, even customers in urban areas.
Will schools and public agencies receive priority notice of shutoffs?
Yes, according to PG&E. Schools are listed among the several categories of “critical facilities” that will receive priority notice of shutoffs.
Is anyone exempt from shutoffs?
No. Shutoffs cover the entire area downstream from the de-energized line. There is no way to exempt individual customers in the affected area. Customers with access and functional needs (called “AFN” populations) can get more information here.
What should we do to prepare?
We recommend that all electricity customers do the following to prepare for potential shutoffs.
Are there additional considerations for public schools?
Yes. Schools and colleges may declare that a campus will close as soon as they receive an advance PSPS notice, to provide students and their families as much notice as possible.
HOW WILL CUSTOMERS BE NOTIFIED?
|PG&E has created a website where it will post updates on weather and potential shutoffs.
Notice methods will include automated phone calls, texts, emails and online announcements. Whenever possible, notiﬁcations will adhere to the following minimum notiﬁcation timeline:
Anticipated de-energization (Shutoff of power)
Re-energization (Restoration of power)