UPDATE, 5 p.m.: Now PG&E Has Released a Map Indicating a Whole Lot More Than 2,000 Local Customers Could Be Affected By the Saturday Shutoff, and No One Knows What to Make of That Since They Said the Opposite Thing

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UPDATE, 4:10 p.m.: From a PG&E press release mostly about the current PSPS underway in other parts of the state:

PG&E is also closely following a potentially strong, widespread dry offshore wind event on Saturday that is significant in scope and could impact the Sierra Foothills, North Bay, Peninsula, Central Coast, East Bay and Humboldt.

PG&E expects all customers impacted by Wednesday’s (Oct 23) PSPS event to have their power restored prior to the second potential PSPS event over the weekend. Some customers who will be restored today and tomorrow from this first event may also be included in this separate event this weekend. Customers should prepare by fully charging their communications, medical and other devices while the power remains on.


UPDATE, 3:12 p.m:

From the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office:

Due to an expected severe wind event anticipated to occur around 10 pm Saturday night, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) notified the county this afternoon that it will de-energize some power lines in Humboldt County as part of the utility’s Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) program.  At this time, PG&E expects that 2,188 customer connections in Humboldt County will be affected.  Electricity is expected to be turned off for those PG&E customers Saturday evening, possibly several hours before the wind increases. 

This PSPS event is expected to last longer than the roughly 24-hour event earlier this month, which means residents who are affected may have electricity shut off for a longer period of time.  The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services (Sheriff’s OES) will provide updated information from the utility as it becomes available.

The length of the outage and estimated time of restoral [sic] is entirely up to PG&E. For information about PSPS or to sign up for alerts, go to www.prepareforpowerdown.com or call 1-877-9000-PGE.

PG&E expects to issue maps later today that show the anticipated affected areas.  The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services (Sheriff’s OES) will provide those maps and any information regarding affected areas as it becomes available.  If the shutoff is isolated in Humboldt County, or includes distribution lines in our area, ground inspection may take longer than the aerial inspection completed after the Oct. 9th shutoff before restoration can begin.

The overall PSPS is expected to affect 32 California counties and approximately 640,000 customer connections.  As conditions may continue to change and the scope of this event may be expanded, the county recommends that all county residents be prepared for an extended power outage beginning Saturday night.

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Original post:

You might have missed it, but the Humboldt County Office of Emergency Services updated an old Facebook post — which, side note, isn’t really that helpful since, by our understanding of it, the Facebook algorithm is unlikely to refeed the same post to people who’ve already viewed it — with the following announcement:

PG&E currently expects that approximately 2,188 Humboldt County customer connections will be de-energized on Saturday 10/26 as a result of wind-driven local fire conditions. We will post the outage map as soon as PG&E provides it, and it will also be available on their website. They are unable to provide specific timing or a total duration for the local shutdown, but the wind conditions are expected late Saturday evening, power may be shut down several hours in advance, and wind conditions may persist through Sunday and into Monday before restoration can begin.

We will continue to provide updates as we receive new information. While this event is currently expected to affect a much smaller number of customers, all Humboldt County residents should prepare for the possibility of a more widespread outage than currently planned, just in case.