On Sunday, thousands of residents around the Bay Area — mostly those in the East Bay, but a sizeable amount in San Francisco, as well — experienced an unplanned PG&E power outage that's been tied to this weekend’s light rain (and neglected power lines).
Just as a Red Flag Warning was issued for various parts of the Bay Area, as well as other regions in NorCal, an estimated 28,9000 PG&E customers found themselves without power Saturday evening and into Sunday. And of them, about 24,000 of those affected utility accounts were located in the East Bay. (Richmond and El Cerrito were reportedly hit the hardest with some 19,700 customers losing power; neighboring areas — Castro Valley, Fremont, Hayward, San Leandro, Livermore, Moraga, and Lafayette — were also affected.)
According to Mercury News, another 2,500 customers in San Francisco also lost power.
A spokesperson for the controversial utility company told ABC7 Sunday morning that the outages stem from the buildup on power lines of “dust, dirt, salt, and other substances” after a long dry period. In other words: Today's power outages are the result of PG&E neglecting to upkeep its dangerously antiquated equipment. At least this time those power lines didn't spark and cause a catastrophic, deadly wildfire.
Though there are reports of customer accounts being restored, PG&E's power outage map still shows many of the affected areas with an "orange square" overlay — meaning that anywhere between 500 and 4,999 customer accounts could still be without power.
Photo: Screenshot via PG&E power outage map