January 21, 2010– Heavy rain and high winds are expected to keep San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) crews busy as forecasters predict the worst of this week’s series of storms will sweep through the region today. Utility crews are being staged at operations centers for staffing around-the-clock to coordinate service restoration, communications and logistical support throughout the storms.
From Monday through late yesterday, approximately 92,000 customers had lost power. SDG&E called in all available crews and has 19 auxiliary contract crews on standby, in anticipation of more weather-related outages, system damage and potential flooding.
“Wind gusts up to 50 miles per hour inland and even stronger gusts in the mountains have blown tree branches and other debris into our lines causing outages,” said David L. Geier, vice president of electric transmission and distribution for SDG&E. “As strong winds return and more rain pounds our community, we could see additional system damage. Our crews are working long hours under difficult storm conditions to restore power as safely and quickly as possible. We appreciate our customers’ understanding and patience as we battle to keep the lights on.”
Outage restoration times will be updated throughout the day on SDG&E’s
Web site, http://sdge.com/outages/, which customers can connect to via mobile devices, if computers or phones are down. Outage updates also are available on Twitter, @SDGE.
Additionally, SDG&E is offering the following storm safety tips:
• Be sure not to touch any downed lines, as the lines may still be energized and dangerous.
• Always assume that power lines are energized.
• Keep a battery-operated radio and flashlights handy in case the power goes out. Check batteries now to make sure the equipment works. Do not rely on candles for lighting during a power outage.