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Pacific Gas and Electric workers restore power

PG&E Nears Completion of Electric and Gas Restoration

Oct 18, 2017

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As its crews continued to respond to outages caused by the devastating wildfires in Northern California,Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) said Wednesday evening that it had safely restored 99 percent of electric service to customers who are able to receive power. Gas service has also been restored to approximately 80 percent of those able to receive it.

Since the fires began, more than 353,000 customers who experienced electric outages due to the wildfires have had their service restored. As of Thursday morning, Oct. 19, the company expects that all but approximately 2,800 customers who are able to receive electric service will have been restored. These customers are in difficult-to-reach areas with challenging terrain and/or PG&E is awaiting CAL FIRE’s approval to access. PG&E expects to restore these remaining customers by Friday.

PG&E has restored 30,000 customers without gas service who are able to receive it, or approximately 80 percent. PG&E crews have visited another 4,400 customer homes/businesses, but have been unable to gain access to restore gas service. In addition, there are about 3,700 customers who will be contacted for restoration and the company expects to reach approximately 3,200 of them by Wednesday evening. PG&E will work to complete restoration on Thursday and Friday as contact is made and access is granted by the customers.

More than 4,300 PG&E employees and mutual-aid partners have worked during this event to safely restore electric and gas service to customers affected by the fires. PG&E has worked closely with CAL FIRE, other agencies and first responders to be able to make the necessary repairs as soon as safe access to fire zones was assured.

PG&E Corporation CEO and President Geisha Williams met with hundreds of PG&E crew members and mutual aid workers early Wednesday morning at the company’s base camp at Rohnert Park near Santa Rosa. “Our primary focus is the life safety and well-being of our customers and the communities affected by these devastating wildfires. Our crews have been working nonstop to get electric and gas service restored for our customers. We are committed to a steadfast and strong presence in these communities as we help them move forward to restore and rebuild. We’re in it for the long haul,” said Williams.

PG&E has set up neighborhood answer centers at tables or pop-up tents in affected areas to serve customers returning to their homes. Mobile customer service teams are walking neighborhoods impacted by the fires to offer assistance and gather information to address customer needs.

For customers seeking restoration and response information related to the fires, the company has set up a dedicated web site atwww.pgecommitment.com. 

Electric Progress

  • Since the fires began on Oct. 9, PG&E has been working to restore power to 359,000 affected customers.
  • As of Wednesday evening, Oct. 18, PG&E had restored 99 percent of customers who can receive power.
  • PG&E expects that all but 2,800 customers able to receive electric service will be restored by Thursday morning, Oct. 19. These customers are in hard-to-access or restricted areas. PG&E expects to restore the remaining customers throughout Thursday and Friday. 

Gas Progress 

  • To protect customer and public safety, PG&E proactively turned off gas service to 42,000 customers.
  • As of Wednesday evening, Oct. 18, approximately 30,000 customers who can receive service have been restored, or 80 percent.
  • PG&E crews have visited the remaining 4,400 customers without gas service who can receive it, but were unable to gain access to the properties to restore service. PG&E will work to complete restoration as access is granted by the customers.
  • In addition, there are about 3,700 customers who will be contacted for restoration and the company expects to reach approximately 3,200 of them by Wednesday evening.
  • PG&E will work to complete restoration on Thursday and Friday as contact is made and access is granted by the customers. 

Electric Restoration Process

  • Once crews have been given permission to enter an area by CAL FIRE, PG&E crews begin the electric assess, repair and restoration process.
  • Once safe, the first step is damage assessment. Typically, this occurs within 12 to 24 hours.
  • PG&E workers will be on site to make the area safe by isolating electrical hazards. The next steps are equipment repairs and coordinated restoration.
  • Based on needed repairs and time to compete work, an estimated time for restoration is established and communicated to customers.
  • Prior to safely re-energizing homes and businesses, PG&E will inspect adjacent facilities and ensure locations are safety to receive power.
  • Where safe to do so and access is allowed, restoring service will typically take 24-48 hours depending on the extent of damage and complexity of the work.
  • Repopulation decisions to areas or neighborhoods are made by local law enforcement.

Gas Restoration Process

  • Once crews have been given permission to enter an area by CAL FIRE, PG&E crews begin the gas restoration process.
  • Once PG&E gains access to homes and businesses, gas crews check the meter. Then, PG&E works to identify structures that are safe to restore service and those that have sustained too much damage to safely restore service. Assessments begin immediately and typically occur within 24 hours of gaining accesss 
  • Because gas service was turned off to customers, any air present in the pipeline system is purged to ensure that natural gas is safely delivered to every structure.
  • Next, the system must be resupplied with gas and pressure tested to make sure it is safe.
  • PG&E gas workers visit every home or business where gas may be safely restored to turn the meter on, purge the pipe within the structure, check for leaks and ensure every pilot light is relit for safe operation.
  • Repopulation decisions to areas or neighborhoods are made by local law enforcement.
  • Customers who are able to return home and do not have gas service should call PG&E at 1-800-743-5000 to schedule a relight. They shouldNOT attempt to relight their pilot lights themselves.

 

About PG&E

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric energy companies in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit www.pge.com/ and www.pge.com/en/about/newsroom/index.page.

 

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