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What is a Public Safety Power Shutoff?

Your local power company may need to turn off power during when weather or natural conditions could affect the power supplies. So to prevent excess damage, your utility may shut off the power, which is called a Public Safety Power Shutoff, or PSPS.

How do I prepare for a
Public Power Safety Shutoff?

The effects of climate change are making California’s wildfire season longer and more intense, threatening our homes, our lives, and our economy. That’s why it is important to prepare an emergency plan in advance in the event your family is affected by a power shutoff – or any other emergency.

What You Can Do Now:

How We Can Help:

Do you have medical devices in your home?

Some medical conditions require devices that need to be powered at all times, which can be a problem during a Public Safety Power Shutoff. If this sounds like anyone in your household, you may qualify for the Medical Baseline Allowance Program, which could save you money on your electric bill and get extra notifications ahead of a PSPS.

Do you need electricity for a medical device?

During a Public Safety Power Shutoff, ALL customers serviced by an affected power line will have their power shut off. If you rely on electric or battery-dependent medical technologies such as breathing machines, a power wheelchair or scooter, home oxygen or dialysis, it is critical that you have a plan in place for an extended power outage.’

Your plan should include:

your plan should include Keeping emergency phone numbers handy

Emergency physical written phone numbers

your plan should include A backup location where you can go

A plan to get to a backup location

You plan should include Making sure your energy company is aware of your medical device

Alerting your energy company of any medical device that is dependent on electricity

Your plan should include Considering a safe backup power source, such as a generator or uninterruptible power supply

A backup power source, like a generator or other reliable power supply

Your plan should include establishing multiple people you can contact for help who can operate your equipment and backup systems

A list of contacts that can assist you and know how to operate your emergency equipment

Be Safe

Be sure that you are familiar with all the applicable safety guidelines and manufacturer instructions for backup power sources or other emergency kit supplies. It is important not to put yourself or your family at risk by using these items improperly. Download our generator fact sheet to learn more.

 For People Who Use Electricity and Battery Dependent Assistive Technology and Medical Devices

What happens during a
Public Safety Power Shutoff?

Every situation is unique. Your energy company makes the decision to turn off power by monitoring local fire danger conditions across California and taking into consideration a combination of weather and environmental factors, including:

When will a Public Safety Power Shutoff occur?

Every situation is unique. Your energy company makes the decision to turn off power by monitoring local fire danger conditions across California and taking into consideration a combination of weather and environmental factors. 

These may include, but are not limited to:

Public Safety Power Shutoff Factors may include high winds and high wind gusts

HIGH WINDS AND HIGH WIND GUSTS

Public Safety Power Shutoff Factors may include low humidity levels

LOW HUMIDITY LEVELS

Public Safety Power Shutoff Factors may include dry vegetation that could serve as fuel for a wildfire

DRY VEGETATION

that could serve as fuel for a wildfire

Public Safety Power Shutoff Factors may include fire threat to electric infrastructure

FIRE THREAT

to electric infrastructure

Public Safety Power Shutoff Factors may include real time observations by experts on the ground

REAL-TIME OBSERVATIONS

by on-the-ground field experts

Flag Warning

RED FLAG WARNING

declared by the National Weather Service

How long until power is restored?

Power will remain out for as long as extreme and dangerous weather conditions pose a potential fire risk. We know that it is difficult to be without power due to a Public Safety Power Shutoff, but your energy company will be actively inspecting and repairing power lines and equipment so that power can be safely restored as fast as possible.

Depending on the risk of causing more damage, the weather, and other factors, power outages could last several hours or multiple days – so it’s important to have an emergency plan in place.

Select your electric utility to learn more

Medical devices in your home?

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