Living Between Fires and Blackouts

10 min
A PG&E worker cuts damaged power lines on Nov. 13, 2018. (Anne Wernikoff/KQED)

PG&E said there were failures on one of its high-voltage transmission lines just minutes before the Kincaid Fire erupted in Sonoma County.  It's renewed concern that PG&E equipment is implicated. This comes at a time when the utility has been turning off power to reduce the risk of another wildfire. More than 200,000 Bay Area PG&E customers had their power shut off this week in the latest response to dangerous weather conditions that are aiding the fire in Sonoma County. The shutdowns are disruptive at best, deadly at worst. Which begs the question: What is the alternative to fires and blackouts? And what else can PG&E do?

Guest: Lauren Sommer, KQED Science reporter

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