Excerpted from San Francisco Chronicle 10.25.2019
Massive blackouts affecting more than 2 million people are expected this weekend throughout the Bay Area, Northern California and Central California, the third time this month that Pacific Gas and Electric Co. will have turned off power to avert catastrophic wildfires.
PG&E said about 850,000 homes and businesses in its service territory might start losing power Saturday evening as it scrambles to prevent powerful winds — the strongest in years — from damaging its lines and thereby sparking more fires.
PG&E issued a “watch” notice — meaning that shut-offs are highly likely — on territory across 36 counties, including most of the Bay Area, for Saturday, Sunday and Monday. The shut-offs will affect more Bay Area residents than either the outage this week that’s just ending or the mid-October outage.
San Francisco is expected to be spared, but every other Bay Area county will see some lose power if the shut-offs proceed as planned.
The National Weather Service said Friday that a red-flag warning for dangerously strong winds and critically low humidity was in effect for the North Bay and East Bay from 8 p.m. Saturday to 11 a.m. Monday, and for the Peninsula coast and the Santa Cruz Mountains from 3 a.m. Sunday to 11 a.m. Monday.