As Heat Wave Continues, Additional SCE Crews on Standby

With triple-digit temperatures lasting through the weekend, the utility prepares for any additional power outages throughout its service territory.

August 14, 2015 | By Caroline Aoyagi-Stom

It was 117 degrees in Palm Springs Friday and the Inland Empire hit a high of 105. And this sweltering heat throughout Southern California was forecast to last through the weekend.

Everyone is trying to stay cool and air conditioners are getting a workout. With the increase in demand for electricity, Southern California Edison (SCE) crews are at the ready in case it results in outages.

“We will be closely monitoring conditions this weekend and SCE has crews ready to respond in case of any additional outages,” said Jim Cherrie, SCE director of Grid Operations. “Currently, our system is performing well.”    

The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning through Sunday. The valley areas of Los Angeles and Ventura counties are expected to see highs of up to 105 degrees. Relief from the sweltering heat is not expected until early next week.

Although CAISO has not issued a Flex Alert, noting that the state has adequate supplies of power, the system operator did issue a Restricted Maintenance Operations alert through Monday.

SCE evaluates and adjusts various scheduled maintenance outages during extreme weather conditions. All routine outages have been cancelled during this current heat wave. Only those outages which may compromise the utility’s electrical system or risk the public’s safety will continue. 

During prolonged periods of high heat, power outages may occur. SCE reminds its customers to watch for traffic signals that may be out and approach those intersections as four-way stops.

County operated Cool Centers are available during periods of extreme heat. Customers can dial 211 or visit the local county 211 website, or go to www.sce.com and view a listing of Extreme Heat Cool Centers.

Customers may also inquire about outages at 1-800-611-1911 and get the latest information from the outage page at www.sce.com/outages or by downloading the SCE outages app on their smartphones. Updates also are shared via Twitter.

Here are some other safety tips:

  • Make sure you have a battery-operated radio and flashlights. Check the batteries to make sure they’re fresh. Use flashlights for lighting during a power outage. Do not use candles because they pose a significant fire hazard.
  • 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.

Topics: Customer Service, Safety