Power cuts in California increase as strong winds increase fire risk | Business and Economy News

According to local utilities, more than 200,000 customer accounts may lose service in the Los Angeles and surrounding areas of San Diego.

By And bloomberg

The largest utility in Southern California cut power for more customers in the mountains near Los Angeles as strong winds increased the risk of wildfires, marking the second year in a row that parts of the area will spend Thanksgiving in the dark. .

Edison International’s Southern California utility cut power to 63,835 homes and businesses in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties as of 10:36 a.m. local time, to spark live wires as wind storms over the drought. To be avoided – stricken area. According to local utilities, more than 200,000 customer accounts may lose service in the Los Angeles and surrounding areas of San Diego.

Power companies in California have begun shutting down power lines before strong winds after a series of deadly wildfires were triggered by their equipment. It is one of the ways in which years of drought have reshaped life in the Golden State, home to nearly 40 million people. Last year, Southern California Edison cut power to more than 20,600 homes and businesses on Thanksgiving Day, when many were sheltering at home because of the worsening coronavirus pandemic.

Strong, dry winds are expected in Southern California through Thanksgiving night, the National Weather Service said, although a greater risk of dangerous fire conditions will remain in place through Friday. A Red Flag Warning – Highest Alert – has been posted from Santa Barbara to the Mexican border as of Friday. The US Storm Prediction Center said severe fire-weather conditions in parts of Southern California will continue through Thursday morning and are expected to persist throughout the day with strong winds in the afternoon.

“You can do your part by staying informed and prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice, especially if you live in canyon, mountain or foothill communities,” Kevin McGowan, director of the Los Angeles County Office of Emergency Management, said in a press release Wednesday. lives in.” release.

Edison warned that more than 156,000 homes and businesses could lose electricity, while Sempra Energy’s San Diego Gas & Electric cut power to more than 5,300 customers in a dozen communities and warned of a potential shutoff Which is potentially affecting around 48,000 homes and businesses. Service will be restored after companies survey their power lines for wind damage.

Across California, 8,367 fires have burned nearly 3.1 million acres (1.3 million hectares) of state and federal land this year, burning more than 3,600 buildings and killing three people, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. happened. According to the US Drought Monitor, the risk of fire has also increased because the entire state is currently in the grip of drought.


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