National Weather Service has announced a Red Flag Warning and High Wind Watch Saturday evening through Sunday evening. PG&E is monitoring the event and may turn off power to areas of Western Nevada County Saturday evening through Monday afternoon for another Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS). Nevada County is posting local updates to our website at www.MyNevadaCounty.com/OctoberPSPS and County social media channels.
Power Outage and Fire Weather Preparedness
Start preparing now for another potential PSPS; once your power is restored, take the opportunity to recharge your devices and restock water if you are on a well. Refuel cars and generators, stock up on supplies, and withdraw cash while the ATMs have power.
Make sure your Go Bag is ready and your car is parked towards the road, and take a moment to check in with friends, family, and neighbors to see if they have any needs you may be able to help with. Find more information and checklists in the Office of Emergency Services 2019 Ready, Set, Go! Guide at www.MyNevadaCounty.com/ReadySetGoGuide.
If you have essential medical equipment that requires electricity, either have a plan to relocate temporarily to a location that still has power, have a safe backup power source, or plan to use one of PG&E’s Community Resource Centers, which are open during daylight hours. Some relocation options: Reach out to friends or family who will have generator power in the area, or who live outside of the affected area (such as Yuba City, Roseville, Rocklin, and Truckee). If this is not an option, consider hotels that are open in the area or hotels in unaffected areas. FREED also has access to limited resources to assist individuals who rely on medical equipment that requires electricity. Call 2-1-1 or 1-833-DIAL-211 if you have these specific needs.
Lowering Overnight Temperatures
Overnight temperatures are dropping to as low as 47 and 44 degrees on Saturday and Sunday. Please plan ahead to stay warm with these low temperatures during PG&E's possible PSPS this Saturday through Monday.
If you don't understand how to use your generator or battery, you risk damaging your property, endangering your life and endangering the lives of PG&E employees who may be working on power lines in your community. PG&E has provided tips on how to properly operate portable generators, permanent-standy generators, portable batteries, and home batteries. Find more information at www.pge.com/GeneratorSafety.
Food Safety Tips
With potential electricity shortages facing Nevada County, the County Department of Environmental Health offers the following food safety tips to prevent food-borne illness in the event of power outages:
- Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. Keep potentially hazardous foods, such as meat or poultry, chilled to 41°F or less.
- Do not place hot or unrefrigerated foods in the refrigerator once the power has gone out. It will raise the temperature inside the unit. Chill food with ice baths as needed. Any foods that were prepared prior to the power outage that were not rapidly cooled should be discarded.
- If the freezer is not full, group packages together so they will retain the cold more effectively. Without power, a full freezer will keep everything frozen for about 2 days. A half-full freezer will keep food frozen 1 day.
- If you have advance warning of a power outage and if the outage is anticipated to last more than 4 hours move foods that must be refrigerated to the freezer as space will allow.
- If necessary, use block ice or bagged ice for supplemental cooling.
- Keep meat and poultry items separated from other foods so if they begin to thaw, their juices will not drip on to other foods.
- Discard any thawed food that has risen to room temperature and remained there for two (2) hours or more.
- Some facilities may need to arrange for temporary refrigerated storage units during a prolonged power outage. (e.g. mobile units/trailers).
- Kitchen ventilation units will shut off during power outages. Be advised that there have been reports of smoke, heat and grease emissions setting off alarm and fire suppression systems.
Find more information on residential food safety at www.MyNevadaCounty.com/FoodSafety.
Restaurants are approved to open if:
- You are approved to go ahead and open if you were on a generator.
- You do not need to throw out any of the animal proteins as long as your refrigerator unit was 41° or below the entire time you were without power if you did not have a generator.
- Please discard all walk in refrigeration and reach-in refrigeration dairy animal proteins and cut vegetables and fruits.
- The Environmental Health Department asks that you sanitize all food contact surfaces before you begin food prep.
Environmental Health has provided a Re-Opening Checklist after Loss of Power (PSPS Event) for food facilities and restaurants at www.MyNevadaCounty.com/RestaurantFoodSafety.
For residents currently receiving Cal Fresh, a mass replacement will be issued on Wednesday night, with benefits available on Thursday for customers who have issue dates on the 1st-9th. These replacement benefits will be issued at 60% of the monthly allotted amount for each customer who lost power for 4 or more hours. These benefits will cover the PSPS that occurred earlier this October.For any future PSPS events, replacement benefits will be issued on an individual basis.
Questions and concerns about the mass replacements or individual replacements can be directed to the County offices at Brighton Greens or the Eric Rood Center, or by calling (530) 265-7213 or (530) 265 7026.
Access to Power During PSPS
PG&E will be opening the following Community Resource Centers (CRC) during any outages from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.:
- Sierra College: 250 Sierra College Dr, Grass Valley, CA
- Former Penn Valley Community Church: 11739 Spenceville Road, Penn Valley, CA
- Gold Country Fairgrounds: 209 Fairgate Rd, Auburn, CA
The CRCs will provide restrooms, bottled water, electronic device charging and air-conditioned seating as usual, and will also be adding snacks, coffee, tea, hot water, flashlights and batteries, portable cell phone chargers, portable solar LED lights, coloring books and crayons.
Areas of Brunswick Basin that were re-energized Wednesday evening shortly after this week's PG&E PSPS are considered low fire-risk areas and contain underground lines. PG&E was able to tie generators into their Brunswick Basin substation giving parts of the Brunswick Basin power and may be able to re-energize this area again shortly after deenergization for the possible Saturday through Monday PG&E PSPS.
Sill Need to Vote for the State Assembly District 1 Special Election?
Truckee and Nevada City Vote Centers for the November 5th 2019 Assembly District 1 Special General Election will be opening this Saturday, October 26th. The Rood Center and Truckee Town Hall will be open Saturday through Sunday 8am to 4pm. You can come in to vote or get a replacement vote-by-mail ballot. If you're not currently registered to vote in Nevada County, you can register and vote conditionally same day! The Eric Rood Vote Center will be open with or without power.