As you have seen in the news, electric utilities in California, including SDG&E, are being directed to initiate rotating outages due to prolonged heat and high energy demand. To help avoid the potential for widespread rotating outages in the coming days, it’s vital we all do our part to help reduce the strain on the electric grid by conserving energy.
The heatwave is forecasted to continue through Thursday. As a result, the California Independent System Operator (CAISO), which manages the state’s power grid and is responsible for ordering rotating outages, is urging everyone to conserve energy because exceptionally high energy demand is expected during this period. CAISO has issued a Flex Alert today through Wednesday, asking for reduced energy use.
Without significant conservation measures to reduce demand on the grid, we anticipate SDG&E and other utilities in the state will be required to implement widespread rotating outages as a last resort to help maintain stability of the statewide grid. Power is usually restored to impacted customers in about an hour.
Due to the severity of the forecasted conditions, it is possible that customers who were affected by rotating outages on Friday and Saturday (Aug. 14 and 15) could be impacted again over the coming days, if CAISO directs SDG&E to implement rotating outages.
Communities located in High Fire Threat Districts that are subject to Public Safety Power Shutoffs are excluded from rotating outages, as are certain critical facilities, such as hospitals, police and fire stations.
How You Can Help
Conservation continues to be vital to help avoid the need for rotating outages, as well as the duration of outages and the number of customers affected. Health and safety permitting, here are some actions to take to save energy:
- Set your air conditioner thermostat a few degrees higher (ideally at 78 degrees or higher) and pre-cool your home before 4 p.m. If possible, turn off the AC during a power emergency
- Use large appliances, such as dishwashers, clothes washers, and dryers before 4 p.m. or after 9 p.m.
- Reduce pool pump filtering or turn it off
- Keep the doors of your refrigerator and freezer closed.
- Switch off all unnecessary lighting (for businesses, turn off advertising signs and display/flood/decorative lighting)
- Cut down on water use because water pumping/processing requires electricity
- Don’t charge electric vehicles from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., if possible
- Defer or reduce all non-essential use of commercial and industrial equipment, such as boilers, exhaust fans, reproduction equipment, maintenance and repair equipment, dispensing machines, intercoms, cleaning equipment, circulating pumps and electric chargers.
To help support our community during this challenging time, everyone is also urged to continue to observe social distancing and face covering guidelines as they find ways to cope with the heat and rotating outages.
Where to Learn More
While SD&GE may not receive much advance notice that it is being directed to implement outages, SDG&E is committed to providing our customers with as much notice as possible as the situation changes. We are leveraging multiple means to provide customers with updates, including automated phone calls, text messages, emails, our website (sdge.com), local news outlets and social media (Twitter, Facebook and Instagram).
- For information about outages and restoration times, visit sdge.com/outagemap
- For safety tips on what to during an outage and for answers to frequently asked questions regarding rotating outages, visit sdge.com/outage
If rotating outages are ordered by CAISO, SDG&E will post the circuit and block numbers of those who may be impacted at sdgenews.com. You can find those numbers on your paper bill under the electric service section or via the SDG&E app or sdge.com/myaccount.
We understand there is never a good time to lose power, and it’s especially challenging during a heat wave and pandemic. Please be assured we will restore power safely and quickly as soon as we are directed to do so by CAISO. We appreciate your efforts to conserve energy and thank you for your patience.