Pacific Gas and Electric Co. crews repair downed wires during snowy conditions Dec. 26, 2012. Photos courtesy Pacific Gas and Electric Co.
Snowstorms on Christmas Day 2012 and the day following caused fresh power outages in Shasta and Plumas counties, where Pacific Gas and Electric Co. crews — more than 300 strong — continued to work through Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to repair broken poles and downed wires from fallen trees, said PG&E. About 3,000 customers were affected.
After nearly a week of 16-hour workdays, most of the hundreds of PG&E workers who came from outside the North Valley to assist local crews in storm recovery headed home Dec. 27, 2012.
“PG&E has largely recovered from power outages during three storm events in the past week which plagued Plumas and Shasta counties with deep and low-elevation snowfall, which brought down many trees into power lines in remote areas,” according to a press release.
Hardest hit were Plumas and Shasta counties.
About 500 customers were still affected by 41 outages in PG&E’s North Valley Division as of the morning of Dec. 27, with most scheduled to be restored that afternoon and evening. The remaining customers (167) are primarily in La Porte in Plumas County, and the Shasta County communities of Lakehead, Big Bend and Whitmore.
PG&E reported strong winds and heavy, low-elevation snows brought down trees and power lines.
In Plumas County, about 2,000 customers were without power at the height of the outages, mainly in La Porte, Lake Almanor, Canyon Dam and Bucks Lake. Some customers lost power in the Lassen County community of Westwood.
PG&E restored power to 1,000 customers the afternoon of Dec. 26. “Crews are using snow cats to reach damaged lines and poles in remote mountain forests, working 16-hour days,” PG&E reported.
About 500 personnel from throughout PG&E’s service area were involved in the restoration effort in the North Valley, assigned to nearly 65 separate outage locations, generally at hard-to-access areas with deep snow.
Customers who experience a power outage are encouraged to call PG&E at 800-743-5002 to report their outage and get updates on restoration status. Customers can also choose to get a call back when more information is available, or request a wake-up call.
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