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October 9, 2019 04:25 pm

Utility Giant PG&E Voluntarily Shuts Off Power, Could Impact 800,000 Californians

Pacific Gas & Electric began cutting off power to nearly 800,000 customers across large swaths of Northern and Central California Wednesday morning, in a planned outage that it says is necessary to avoid the risk of fire. From a report: PG&E gave residents in more than 30 counties advance warnings about the power cut, which it says would "proactively" reduce the dangerous effects of a potential "widespread, severe wind event" forecast for Wednesday. The utility giant's transmission lines have been linked to wildfires that have devastated communities in California. It filed for bankruptcy protection in January, and it's been roundly criticized for mismanagement and safety failures. As of Wednesday morning, people in Humboldt, Marin, Napa, Sonoma and other counties are currently without power in the initial phase of PG&E's Public Safety Power Shutoff. "The decision to turn off power was based on forecasts of dry, hot and windy weather including potential fire risk," PG&E said in a statement about the outage.

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