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By Miriam Raftery

December 22, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) – SDG&E has notified around 30,000 customers that their power could be shut off due to high fire danger.  The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for parts of Southern California due to possible strong winds from 8 a.m. Wednesday through 12 p.m. Thursday, Christmas Eve. The communities at risk range from El Cajon east to Campo, north to Escondido and mountain areas such as Julian, and as far south as Potrero near the border.

The threat of losing electricity in mid-winter during Christmas week is disheartening for backcountry residents, many of whom have stocked up refrigerators and freezers for holiday feasts. ECM has received complaints from residents who report SDG&E refused to reimburse them for food spoiled during other recent outages. Coming at a time when many are without jobs or have businesses with little income due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the prospect of financial losses due to power outages or worse, a wildfire are particularly troubling.

The utility posted on its webpage today:  “SDG&E is closely monitoring the situation for safety and will post the latest information regarding the weather and any potential for isolated Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS) on  our News Center and on the PSPS page…PSPS are done as a last resort to protect public safety and reduce wildfire risk. SDG&E crews and other personnel are on standby to minimize potential impacts if power is shut off. We appreciate your understanding given the unfortunate timing.”

Communities current listed as at risk of outages are:

  • Alpine
  • Boulevard
  • Campo
  • Campo Reservation
  • Chula Vista
  • Cuyapaipe Reservation
  • Descanso
  • El Cajon
  • Escondido
  • Julian
  • La Jolla Reservation
  • La Posta Reservation
  • Los Coyotes Reservation
  • Manzanita Reservation
  • Mesa Grande Reservation
  • Palomar Mountain
  • Pauma Reservation
  • Pauma Valley
  • Pine Valley
  • Potrero
  • Poway
  • Ramona
  • Ranchita
  • Rincon Reservation
  • San Pasqual Reservation
  • Santa Ysabel
  • Santa Ysabel Reservation
  • Sycuan Reservation
  • Valley Center
  • Warner Springs

If power is shut off, community resource centers will be opened at locations to be announced by SDG&E.  Resource centers typically include snacks, water, charging stations and more.


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