City and County Ask State To Reconsider Planned Power Outages

Written by on March 15, 2019

The controversial issue of Southern California Edison turning off electrical power during windy weather has blossomed into a statewide storm of controversy.

You may recall …. last summer the California Public Utilities Commission quietly approved a plan to allow power companies in the state to black out circuits when they were worried about windy weather causing fires.

The only objection to that in the entire state was from Malibu … after a local radio reporter noticed the item in the agenda and alerted the city council.

Zuma Beach FM Broadcasting filed a legal complaint with the CPUC … noting that its FCC license requires it to warn listeners of impending fires … and that it could not do that if Edison cuts the power.

Then came the Woolsey and Paradise fires.

Now .. hundreds of complaints about the PS PS blackout program are emerging.

This week … both the City of Malibu and County of Los Angeles filed separate complaints with the CPUC about preemptive blackouts.

The county letter says the blackouts shift the responsibility and liability for generating electricity from the utility to thousands of backyard gas powered generators.

Says the county, and we quote:

“The use of small portable generators … may increase the possibility of single point

ignitions within these areas during high risk times.”

The county says the message … to generate your own electricity … “needs to be reviewed by Los Angeles County Fire Department so that they can help mitigate any unexpected consequences from less reliable … and unmaintained …home-use generators.”

Both the city and the county warn of other blackout consequences were not considered by the state.

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