High winds sweeping down from the north caused power outages Monday in communities across Southern California.
As if 1:30 p.m., Southern California Edison was managing about 500 storm-related incidents with more than 5,400 customers affected by the wind. SCE work crews have begun restoring electric service to customers without power as a result of the high winds.
Areas impacted in SCE’s service territory include Huntington Beach, Compton, Whittier, Seal Beach, Valencia, Montebello, Monrovia, Antelope Valley and Tehachapi.
Safety is SCE’s No. 1 priority for its customers and employees. If you see a downed line or dangling wire – even if it appears not to be live – don’t touch or approach it and call 911 immediately.
Here are some tips for dealing with weather-related outages:
- If you know someone who is dependent on electrically operated medical equipment, make backup power arrangements in case a power outage affects that equipment.
- Watch for traffic signals that may be out. Approach those intersections as four-way stops.
- Make sure you have a battery-operated radio and flashlights. Check the batteries to make sure they are fresh. Use flashlights for lighting during a power outage; do not use candles because they pose a significant fire hazard.
- Do not use equipment indoors that is designed for outdoor cooking. Such equipment can emit carbon monoxide and other toxic gases.
- Leave the doors of your refrigerator and freezer closed to keep your food as fresh as possible. Place blocks of ice inside to help keep food cold. Check food carefully for signs of spoilage.
- Check on your neighbors to make sure everyone is safe.
- If you use a generator, place it outdoors and plug individual appliances directly into the generator, using a heavy-duty extension cord. Connecting generators directly to household circuits creates “backfeed,” which is dangerous to repair crews.
As of 4 p.m. Monday, power outages in the LA area were impacting 5,700 out of the 1.4 million LADWP electric customers. The number of affected customers peaked at 17,800, the Los Angeles Water and Power said.
The agency said windstorm has caused power outages throughout the day as severely dried out palm fronds, tree branches and other debris fell and made contact with power lines; high winds are expected to last throughout Monday night.
In the morning, LADWP crews were working continuously and have restored power to more than 16,785 impacted customers.
LADWP said crews continued to respond to reports of downed trees and power poles in multiple locations across the city.
LADWP urges all customers to use caution around downed or dangling power wires or poles. Always assume a downed line is still energized. Never touch one. Report any downed power lines immediately by calling the LADWP at 1-800-DIAL-DWP. If you or someone else is in danger, call 911.