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Rotating Power Blackouts Avoided As Customers Conserve

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Sonora, CA — PG&E reports that rotating power outages were not needed yesterday because customers took heed and conserved energy across the state.

Power outages remain a possibility, ranging from 1-3 hours, between 3-10pm, over the next few days. We reported yesterday that the threat of a potential outage led to the Sonora City Council to postpone last night’s meeting until this coming Monday.

California’s power grid operators will continue to keep a wary eye on the thermometer as a heat wave continues to stress the electrical system. The Associated Press reports that at one point yesterday, officials were considering rotating outages for an estimated 3.3 million homes and businesses. PG&E customers should be prepared for the possibility. The company promises to notify customers ahead of time, but it may be a very short window of time prior to the outage.

PG&E Tips to Save Energy and Reduce Usage

  • Raise the thermostat: Cool homes and use air conditioners more during morning hours. Set the thermostat to 78 degrees when at home during the rest of the day, health permitting. Turn it up to 85 degrees or turn it off when not at home.
  • Use a ceiling fan: Turn on a ceiling fan when using the air conditioner, which will allow the thermostat to be raised about 4 degrees to save on cooling costs with no reduction in comfort. Turn off fans and lights when you leave the room.
  • Cover windows: Use shade coverings and awnings so the air conditioner won’t have to work as hard to cool the home.
  • Avoid using the oven: Instead, cook on the stove, use a microwave or grill outside.
  • Limit the opening of refrigerators, which are major users of electricity in most homes. The average refrigerator is opened 33 times a day.
  • Clean clothes and dishes early: Use large energy-consuming appliances like washing machines and dishwashers earlier in the day or late at night after 10:00 pm.