(CNN)A Southern California utility is warning it may intentionally cut power to thousands of customers this holiday week because of gusty and dry conditions conducive to wildfires.
Southern California Edison is considering whether to shut off power to more than 76,000 customers in or near Greater Los Angeles, according to the utility’s website Wednesday morning.The warning comes in a year when wildfires have hit the state brutally hard. This year’s fires have killed more than 30 people so far and have featured five of the six largest wildfires in California’s recorded history.The National Weather Service has put parts of Southern California, including the Inland Empire area, under a fire weather watch from the afternoon of Thanksgiving to Friday evening.Moderate to strong Santa Ana winds — with gusts of up to 60 mph — and low humidity are likely during that time in the area’s mountains and valleys, the National Weather Service said.Read More”High fire danger is likely Thanksgiving Day and Friday … avoid actions that could spark a #brushfire!!” the National Weather Service’s Los Angeles office said in a tweet on Tuesday evening.
High Fire danger is likely Thanksgiving Day and Friday, you know what to do – avoid actions that could spark a #brushfire!! Any fire start is likely to spread quickly. #CAwx #SoCal #CAfire pic.twitter.com/1nj3p5dQwc
— NWS Los Angeles (@NWSLosAngeles) November 25, 2020 Southern California Edison said customers who may have their power cut are in five counties: Kern, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura. Most (42,100) were in San Bernardino County.The utility typically starts warning of possible power shutoffs up to three days ahead of time. Such shutoffs are meant to keep the electric system from igniting fires should wind topple the infrastructure in dry conditions.The company serves about 5 million customers.