SCE Crews Work Day, Night During Latest Heat Wave

Several days of excessive heat in the Southland had crews working round-the-clock.

September 01, 2015 | By Caroline Aoyagi-Stom

It’s the start of a new workweek and the excessive heat that has engulfed the Southland for the past several days is finally starting to let up.

That’s good news for Mark Martinez, a Southern California Edison (SCE) troubleman who has been working day and night to ensure power is quickly and safely restored to customers. But after several days of 24-hour and 16-hours shifts, it’s something he and other SCE crew members are used to.

It’s also something Martinez’s wife and two sons are used to.

“When I’m working the weekend shifts, she knows she’ll see me on Monday,” he said. “My sons just know that dad is gone for the weekend.”

During this latest round of high heat, Martinez dealt with overloaded transformers and cable that needed to be replaced.

He also ran into several customers who expressed their appreciation for the work he and other crew members were doing, especially in triple-digit temperatures.

“A lot of our customers came up to us and thanked us,” he said. “They were really appreciative of our efforts.”

This latest heat wave began early last week and continued through Sunday. The high temperatures resulted in hazardous weather alerts from the National Weather Service.

“For our crews, the No. 1 priority is our customers and getting the lights back on safely,” said Greg Ferree, SCE vice president of Distribution Business Line. “During the recent heat wave, our system was challenged by the increase in demand for electricity, but the system and our crews performed well.”

SCE’s year-to-date system area peak consumption of 22,461 megawatts was achieved on Friday, Aug. 28. SCE’s all-time weekday peak is 23,303 megawatts on Aug. 31, 2007.

“We want to thank our customers for helping to conserve energy during the past several days,” said Ferree. “We also thank them for their patience as our crews worked day and night to restore power as quickly and as safely as possible.”

Topics: Customer Service, Safety