Power outages in California are occurring amid record heat waves and wildfires, and PG&E will begin rotating power outages without warning. Starting immediately, up to 250,000 customers will lose power in high demand areas. PG&E may not inform customers in advance of the shut-offs that could occur anywhere within the company’s service areas.
Late Friday, PG&E power outages hit upwards of two million Californians over the course of four hours during the first rolling blackouts that hit the state this year. It was too hot, and too much power was required. The blackouts are a function of an overloaded power grid.
Wildfire Season Increases Risk
The blackouts occur as wildfires spread across southern California and other western states. With multiple wildfires raging in the region, and with low containment, loss of power and potential loss of water is even more threatening to PG&E customers.
Last year, PG&E’s power outages in California hit hundreds of thousands of homes and workplaces in northern California and were condemned by customers as well as authorities for being too widespread, and lacking sufficient communication.
The Loyalton fire in Lassen county, north east of Sacramento, has burned 20,000 acres and was 5% contained by early Sunday, according to CNN.
The Lake Fire is growing in California and evacuation orders have been issued for areas in the fire’s path. The fire started in the afternoon of August 12 and just a few hours later it had already exploded to more than 10,000 acres in size. Nearby brush, gusty winds, hot temperatures in the 90s, and low humidity, all helped fuel the wildfire’s growth.
With wildfires increasing, continued power outages in California are likely and may occur without warning.
San Andreas Fault Activity Increasing
The San Andreas Fault, one of the country’s most dangerous faults, has become more active. The fault runs about 1,200 kilometers across California.
Dozens of shock hit the southern San Andreas fault area last week. Scientists put the probability of continued shock activity at 80 percent, the risk of severe earthquake is less than 20 percent. This earthquake risk adds to the threats impacting the west coast areas. As we all know, even small earthquakes can cause power outages in California.
“The risk of a large earthquake is still considerably elevated due to the swarm when compared to background levels,” the USGS stated.
Power Outages in California Impact Water
Many affected by the power outages will lose more than electrical power; many will also lose water. Homes on water wells will be without water because well pumps require electricity to provide water to the home or business.
The combined heightened risks from earthquakes and wildfires, dramatically increases the likelihood of power outages in California. Should heavy rains follow the wildfires, the threat of mud slides also increases. All of these threats can impact power transmission well beyond the immediate damage areas.
With adequate warning, you can fill sinks and tubs, or buy bottled water. With little to no warning from PGE or mother nature, you risk being left without water when you need it most.
Water isn’t a luxury—It’s a necessity.
Water is the single most important commodity, above even food and electricity. We take water for granted, because it’s usually there when we want or need it. But, the growing of threats should makes everyone reconsider their emergency water preparedness.
With COVID-19 remaining a concern, consider a permanent emergency water system that provides pressurized potable water throughout your home or business. This eliminates the need to go to a store.
At Constant Water, water security is our specialty and our singular focus. Let’s talk.