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City Manager's Office
City Manager's Office
Press Contact: Matthai Chakko, (510) 981-7008

WITH POWER OUT, TAKE ACTIONS TO STAY SAFE

Berkeley, California (Thursday, October 10, 2019) - UPDATE: Wednesday, October 10 5:00pm

We are seeing power being restored to homes in Berkeley. We do not have official confirmation from PG&E yet of complete restoration.

We will post updates as we get more information.

 


 

Until PG&E restores electricity to select areas of the hills where the utility implemented a planned shut off Wednesday night, please continue to make preparations to be without electricity for up to five days.

The City activated its Emergency Operations Center on Monday, mobilizing staff across all departments and increased police and fire presence in areas PG&E had identified as being potentially affected.

If you need devices charged, please use your workplace, city libraries, senior centers, or other resources you may have access to. PG&E has created a resource center in Oakland for Alameda County that offers water, electricity chargers, and restrooms. Details are below.

Stay safe when the power is out

High fire danger conditions still apply in the hills. Please take steps to reduce fire danger, and do not burn candles or have open flames or take any other actions that could increase risk.

Turn off lights and unplug appliances

If you are without power, turn off all your appliances and lights so they are not damaged when power is restored.  

Conserve water

East Bay Municipal Utility District requests that people conserve water whenever possible.

Check on your neighbors

Neighbors should check on neighbors. Neighborhoods that have developed emergency preparedness plans should use those plans to check on neighbors.

Here are some key actions you can take:

  1. Sign up for alerts
    Know how to get information in multiple ways. Sign up for alerts from PG&E and AC Alert. Although PG&E's site has been offline at times, you can also sign up for PG&E's zip-code specific alerts by texting "ENROLL" to 97633. All City libraries will post information as it becomes available. Listen to 1610 AM for information on the hour on both KPFA 94.1 FM and KPFB 89.3 FM.  

  2. Be ready to evacuate
    Use our wildfire evacuation tips to prepare to leave quickly.  If you believe you may have trouble evacuating in an emergency and you are in a high fire danger area that has no power, you should make plans to leave as soon as possible.

  3. Keep roads in the hills clear
    To help officers and firefighters respond in the hills, avoid parking at red curbs, in "No Parking" areas and within 15 feet of fire hydrants and entrances to fire stations. Extra police and parking enforcement officers will be patrolling the Berkeley hills to ensure safe and accessible roadways.

For residents with medical, access, and functional needs

If you are power-dependent for medical reasons, and you live in an affected area, we encourage you to use your available resources to relocate to an unaffected area. If you are unable to relocate and the loss of power will cause an immediate life threat, call 9-1-1 for transport to an Emergency Room. If you require support for non-emergency needs or questions, please, call 3-1-1 or (510) 981-2489.

The City is particularly aware of the impact this power outage may have on those with access and functional needs. In response to the PG&E outage happening in Berkeley, the City created a task force working with organizations that serve this impacted population.  Before the power outage, a City staff outreach team proactively reached out by telephone and home visits to people with electricity dependent needs. Now that power is off, the teams will continue that important work. At the same time, emergency responders stand ready to assist in any capacity needed. These relationships and values reflect years of work, and underscore our commitment to serve all.

Practice fire safety at home

There are several important fire safety measures when electricity is off:

-    Don't burn anything including candles.
-    Don't idle your car in the hills.
-    Don't use any heat producing tools or machines such as lawn mowers.
-    If you have a generator, know how to use it safely.

Power may take five days to be restored

PG&E has two steps that they must complete before power can be restored:

  • The weather is declared all clear.
  • All power lines and electrical infrastructure are visually inspected and determined safe to be safe to be "re-energized."

PG&E has consistently told the City this can take up to five days after their weather-related needs for an outage are over. For Alameda County, PG&E anticipates that this process will start around 12:00pm Thursday October 10.

Be prepared to evacuate

If you feel threatened, leave immediately. Do not wait for an evacuation order. If you see any of the following, consider evacuating on your own and calling 9-1-1:

  • Visible fire in an adjacent home,
  • Visible fire in a home close by with strong winds,
  • Strong winds carrying smoke and/or embers through or over your neighborhood.

Again, Berkeley residents may contact the 3-1-1 Customer Service line at (510) 981-2489 to report any dangerous conditions.

Charging and wifi access during outages

PG&E Resource Center

PG&E's Alameda County resource center location:

PG&E Alameda County Resource Center
Merritt College Lot B, Leona St, Oakland 94508
The center will remain open during daylight hours only.

Berkeley Public Library

If your devices are not working, you will be able to get information at Berkeley Public Library branches.  The Library will also provide 24-hour Wi-Fi access during this outage.

The Central Library is open 10am-6pm on Thursday. Branch libraries are open from noon to 8pm.

Please help us to keep Berkeley safe during this time.

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