ARVIN, Calif. (KGET) — Throughout the city of Arvin Thursday, businesses were closed or operating without electricity and traffic lights were out. Markets were loading up semi trucks with products that were sure to spoil due to the lack of refrigeration.
The outage has left many residents outraged, questioning what is going on and what they should do next. Some said they have even resorted to sleeping outside because it was too stuffy indoors without air conditioning.
One resident said he was concerned about his family’s access to food.
“We don’t have any electricity in the house and we don’t have no AC and it’s hot,” Aurlio Placencia, 68, said. “We got nothing to eat in the house because the stove works with electricity and so we go to Lamont everyday to eat over there. It’s terrible.”
Another resident, Carlos Salazar said it’s making the roads less safe.
“Even the traffic here in the city, you know, the lights go out and it’s a chaos,” Salazar, 22, said. “I believe there’s been like a little more traffic collisions because of that.”
Salazar added that businesses being down makes it harder for people to buy food.
“All gas stations are down and all the stores are down, so there’s people like everywhere asking, ‘Is there a store open?'” Salazar said.
To temporarily solve the freezer issue at a local meat market, Robbie Alshaif said they are icing their products and getting a generator. Alshaif said that if they would have known for how long the outage was going to be they would have had the generator yesterday.
“We are just waiting for the power to go back on, cause there’s no business since yesterday,” Alshaif said.
Alshaif added that what makes this situation worse is nobody knows when the power is coming back on.
The City of Arvin opened two emergency cooling centers to help residents without power where they gave out food and water.
PG&E officials said they have since restored over 1,100 customers with power again as of Thursday afternoon leaving over 3,800 still without. Full restoration is expected around 7 p.m. on Friday.
PG&E is also offering reimbursements to those impacted.