PROOF THAT OUR INFRASTRUCTURE IS FUCKED
>As PG&E begins a second round of fire-safety power shutoffs, it warns a third, bigger blackout could be needed as soon as the weekend.
> LOS ANGELES — Hundreds of thousands of residents of Northern California whose power will be shut off in the next two days got even worse news Wednesday: Another, even larger, blackout is likely over the weekend.
> The state's largest utility, Pacific Gas and Electric Corp., or PG&E, began shutting off electricity to nearly a half-million people Wednesday afternoon, the second massive blackout in two weeks. It said hot, dry winds and low humidity were creating a high risk of sparks and "rapid wildfire spread" from its long-neglected power lines.
> The blackouts will eventually spread to parts of 17 counties — including such large communities as Santa Rosa, Sonoma and Napa but not San Francisco or San Jose — at least through Thursday afternoon and through Friday afternoon in other parts of the region, PG&E said.
> Mark Quinlan, PG&E's director of environmental health and safety, said that's when the last of the dangerous conditions are expected to end, and only then can its crews go out to inspect 8,000 miles of power lines for damage.
> In the southern part of the state, Southern California Edison said Wednesday night that it was monitoring more than 300,000 customers for a potential power shutoff that could begin Thursday. The potential coverage area includes such large communities as San Bernardino, Malibu, Irvine, Glendale and Palm Springs but not Los Angeles itself, which is served by a separate power company.
> A power "customer" can be a single residence or a large business; a standard conversion that many utilities use assesses 2½ people per customer, meaning as many as 450,000 people could be affected in Northern California. Southern California Edison's potential blackouts could affect more than 750,000 more.
> At the famed Alice's Restaurant in Woodside, in San Mateo County, owner Jamie Kerr bemoaned the "major frustration."
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