Media Contact: Media Relations, (626) 302-2255
ROSEMEAD, Calif., Aug. 9, 2012 — As high temperatures continue in the region today, Southern California Edison (SCE) urges customers to conserve energy and has crews available to respond to possible power outages due to wear on equipment.
With the heat wave continuing, SCE will postpone a number of planned outages, but will continue to conduct some critical planned outages in its service territory. Conducting these critical planned outages helps lessen the possibility of equipment failure; unplanned outages last longer and affect more customers.
As the weekend approaches and energy use is expected to shift to residential customers, SCE encourages conservation at home. Without the opportunity for SCE’s equipment to cool off, transformers and other equipment could fail. SCE will continue to increase the number of crews available through the weekend to respond to possible outages.
SCE has activated several savings programs for residential and business customers to earn bill credits for reducing their energy consumption. The largest program, which shuts off air conditioning for hourly intervals, is helping substantially. Some customers have been using more energy in the evenings this week, especially air conditioning, which is putting a strain on SCE’s distribution equipment.
Customers are urged to conserve power, especially in the evenings, including setting thermostats no lower than 78 degrees and using electric fans instead of air conditioning when practical. Conservation also helps customers keep their bills lower, as bills can increase by 30 percent for residential customers who use air conditioning.
- Turn off unused appliances and equipment.
- Shut off lights when leaving a room.
- Close drapes and blinds to keep out direct sunlight during hot periods.
- Avoid using evaporative coolers or humidifiers at the same time an air conditioner is running.
- Operate swimming pool equipment and energy-intensive appliances, such as dishwashers, washing machines and dryers, during early morning and evening hours.
- Limit the opening and reopening of refrigerators, which are major users of electricity in most homes.
- When possible, businesses should shift power-intensive work processes to morning or evening hours.
- Turn off lights in unused areas.
SCE recommends customers try to stay as cool as possible during the heat.
- Keep outdoor activities to a minimum, and drink a lot of water during the hottest parts of the day.
- During a power outage, turn off and unplug any unnecessary electrical equipment, including sensitive electronics.
- Open the refrigerator and freezer only when necessary to keep the food cold.
- Low-income and medically sensitive customers can take advantage of “Cool Centers,” which are operated by local governments and community-based organizations. A list of locations can be found at www.sce.com/coolcenters.
SCE recommends customers follow these safety tips if a power outage occurs:
- Use flashlights for lighting during a power outage; do not use candles because they pose a significant fire hazard.
- Never attempt to move or go near a downed power line. Call 911 to report the situation.
- Watch for traffic signals that may be out. Approach those intersections as four-way stops.
- If someone in your home is dependent on electric-powered, life sustaining medical equipment, have an emergency plan that includes a back-up power source, or make arrangements to relocate.
About Southern California Edison
An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of nearly 14 million via 4.9 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central, Coastal and Southern California.