A PG&E equipment failure is being blamed for a Sunday morning power outage that affected around 50,000 customers. The majority of those affected were in Berkeley, but the outage was also affecting Albany, Richmond, El Cerrito, and a small portion of Oakland.
The New York Times reports via a PG&E spokesperson that the outage kicked off at 7:35 a.m. due to an equipment issue in El Cerrito. BART lost power and briefly shut down its Downtown Berkeley station, later announcing it was back open and running on generator power.
Many customers had their power back on by 10:45 a.m. Sunday, as SFGate reports, and most were expected to have power restored by 11 a.m.
Official @PGE4Me estimates now say around 41,000 customers without power in Berkeley, Albany, El Cerrito and Richmond.— KCBS 106.9 FM/740 AM (@KCBSRadio) September 29, 2019
Updates during traffic on the eights on https://t.co/qQZfGuAVOs and on the @Radiodotcom app. pic.twitter.com/ftFgwpd8su
As ABC 7 reports, the outage caused 20-minute BART delays in both directions as of 9 a.m.
BART said as of 10:12 a.m. that residual delays could be expected, but that all stations were back up and running.
10:12 am update: Downtown Berkeley Station has been reopened. Riders should still expect residual delays but we’re in the process of restoring normal service. Thanks for your patience!— SFBART (@SFBART) September 29, 2019
It's unclear what the nature of the equipment failure was that caused today's outage, but this was not among the planned, strategic power shutoffs that PG&E has been doing as a safety precaution in certain weather conditions. Last week saw a significant power outage in Butte and Nevada counties, but only a small part of northern Napa and Sonoma counties were affected by one of these shutoffs.