Power Cut to Thousands of Californians Amid Wildfire Threat

Hundreds of firefighters continued to to battle the Sand Fire in Northern California Sunday, as it grew to more than 728 hectares overnight. 

Pacific Gas and Electric Company shut off power to approximately 1,600 customers in Napa, Solano and Yolo counties and about 43,000 customers in Butte, Yuba, Nevada, El Dorado and Placer counties in the Sierra foothills.

As winds, low humidity and heat are expected to continue, the power company said crews are inspecting power lines to check for any weather-related damage and power will be restored when it’s determined to be safe.

​”We know how much our customers rely on electric service, and our decision tonight to turn off power is to protect our communities experiencing extreme fire danger,” Michael Lewis, PG&E’s senior vice president of electric operations, said in a statement.

Last year, Camp Fire destroyed most of the town of Paradise, parts of which are included in the latest shutoffs. Investigators have blamed damaged power lines for sparking that fire. 

The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning for parts of the Central Valley and the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta at elevations below 305 meters, where there has been less rain recently and the vegetation is driest.