High winds prompt PG&E to shut power to 25,000 in California

Photos: 3 wildfires rage in California
Posted at 1:02 PM, Oct 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-11 15:02:32-04

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Pacific Gas & Electric has started cutting power to about 25,000 customers in northern and central California as high winds threaten its equipment, which could ignite wildfires.

Forecasters issued an extreme fire danger warning as winds gusted to 55 mph in mountains and 25 to 45 mph in valleys.

PG&E cut the power Monday and says the planned outages are necessary because winds could raise the risk of trees falling on power lines and sparking fast-spreading wildfires.

The utility began intentionally shutting off power in the fall of 2019 to prevent wildfires after an investigation determined the deadly fire in the community of Paradise was sparked by its equipment.