BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — As many as 13,000 Bakersfield homes and businesses were without power Friday night after PG&E says it was directed to cut power by the California ISO amid high energy demand during a late summer heatwave.
The California ISO said it ended its Stage 3 Emergency declaration just before 9 p.m. Friday and PG&E said impacted customers would have power restored by 11 p.m.
PG&E said it would turn off power to approximately 200,000 to 250,000 customers Friday night across its service area throughout California. The utility said it was going to shut off power to customers in one-hour rotations to reduce power usage on its grid after the California Independent Systems Operator declared a Stage 3 emergency.
CalISO said the Stage 3 Emergency was called after electricity demand across California forced the ISO to dip into operating reserves to cover the demand.
Because of the statewide power emergency, PG&E was unable to notify customers before power was cut off to them, according to a release.
Meanwhile, state officials are asking residents to conserve energy use this weekend as high temperatures and excessive heat are expected throughout the state. A Flex Alert is in effect until 10 p.m. Friday.
Residents are asked to turn off all unnecessary lights, to set air conditioning to 78 degrees or higher and to avoid major appliance use after 3 p.m.
In Bakersfield, officials are asking residents to minimize water use during heat-related power shutoffs to prevent disruptions to water services. Cal Water said they are working to ensure water does not become interrupted and will monitor its water system levels with backup generators at its stations.
The last time a Stage 3 Emergency was declared was in 2001. Thirty-eight Stage 3 emergencies were declared that year, according to CalISO.
We will update this story as we learn more information.