Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) crews have restored essentially all customers who lost electricity following a powerful atmospheric river weather system that battered the company’s service area with several days of heavy rain, damaging winds and deep snow accumulation, as well as flooding and mudslides.
As of 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27, about 851,000 customers, more than 99 percent of those who lost power during the storm, had their power restored. The remainder are primarily located in hard-hit areas where roads remain closed due to heavy snowfall, debris flows or other damage. PG&E will continue to work to gain access to these customers and restore power safely and as quickly as possible.
“We want to thank our customers and communities for their patience and support,” said Marlene Santos, PG&E’s Chief Customer Officer. “This was a historic storm, especially for October, and we marshaled all our resources to respond to it. We recognize the disruption and inconvenience caused by prolonged outages and are sincerely grateful for the understanding of all those whose service has been affected.”
Storm Damage: Hundreds of Poles, Transformers and More
Crews found more than 1,600 locations of damaged infrastructure where equipment needed to be replaced or repaired, including more than 800 damage spans of powerlines, more than 160 crossarms, more than 160 transformers and 200 poles in need of replacement
At the peak of the restoration effort, more than 3,000 electric workers and tree workers were working to assess and repair damage and restore power safely and as quickly as possible for customers. In addition, hundreds more PG&E employees staffed emergency centers and performed other jobs related to the storm response.
The restoration effort included contract crews as well as mutual-aid crews from San Diego Gas & Electric Company.
A Storm of Historic Proportions
The storm arrived shortly after midnight on Sunday, Oct. 24. Record-breaking rain combined with strong winds produced the most storm-related impact seen in the PG&E territory in the month of October since 2009, according to PG&E meteorologists. As examples, Mount Tamalpais received 17 inches of rain, and a wind gust of 92 mph was recorded in Alameda County.
Over the last few years, Californians have dealt with drought, wildfires and intense heat waves. This early-season storm offered a good reminder that preparation before any natural disaster or emergency is important.
PG&E, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is a combined natural gas and electric utility serving more than 16 million people across 70,000 square miles in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit pge.com and pge.com/news.