PG&E has issued a warning to Northstate residents about a looming possibility of a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) on Wednesday.
The utility has activated a PSPS Watch for several counties, including Colusa, Glenn, Shasta, Tehama, Lake, Napa, and Yolo, all slated for Wednesday. Meanwhile, Shasta County is under watch for Thursday.
Meteorologists are actively monitoring a weather system advancing north of California, anticipated to bring brisk and arid northerly winds on Tuesday and Wednesday. Of particular concern is Wednesday, when elevated areas around Lake Shasta might encounter wind gusts ranging from 30 to 45 mph. These winds are expected to sweep southward through the western Sacramento Valley and adjacent terrain.
These winds could bring significant fire danger throughout the region, forcing PG&E to conduct the shutdowns as a mode of caution.
Further forecasts indicate a low-pressure system approaching California on Thursday, lingering in Northern California until early next week. This system might bring showers to the region over the weekend, especially in elevated terrain. Temperatures are predicted to dip below normal across the area, enhancing the dryness of dead fuels and the flammability of live vegetation. These factors could foster larger fire growth, particularly at elevations below 5000 ft.
The embattled power company has been stuck between a rock and a hard place since the revelations that it’s equipment was the cause of multiple deadly and devastating wildfires in NorCal since 2017. The company has paid the fire victims billions of dollars, and is now implementing power shutdowns to avoid being the cause of another costly fire incident.