Alameda County sent out an AC Alert by text and email Friday that PG&E will disconnect power to approximately 57,000 residences and businesses in the county starting Saturday about 5 p.m. The alert said power is expected to be off for more than 48 hours: "We encourage you to find alternative energy sources for light, charging devices and other necessities. Plan ahead with food and water, and make sure your grab-and-go emergency kits are ready."
News of potentially more widespread and longer-lasting shutoffs came as PG&E worked to restore power to some 179,000 customers in 17 counties in the Bay Area and Sierra foothills, who’d had it turned off on Wednesday ahead of another extreme weather event.
PG&E CEO Bill Johnson said those customers would have their power restored before it is turned off again, but cautioned that might not happen in Sonoma County, where firefighters are battling the Kincade Fire that erupted Wednesday evening.
"We have about 1,000 customers in Sonoma County who remain out of service due to the Kincade Fire," a PG&E official said late Friday afternoon. "We believe we’ll be able to reduce that number to 700 customers by the end of Friday evening."
PG&E officials encourage customers who had their power shut off previously to charge all of their devices, including any necessary medical devices, before the next blackout.
PG&E said Thursday that a failure on one of its high-voltage transmission lines occurred in the area of the Kincade Fire ignition point.
The fire has forced approximately 2,000 people from their homes in Sonoma County. Its cause has not been determined.
KQED's Don Clyde contributed to this story. This story has been updated.