Updated Sep 6, 2022 - Energy & Environment

Thousands without power in California as record heat wave roasts U.S. West

Electrical transmission towers at a Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) electrical substation during a heatwave in Vacaville, California, US, on Sunday, Sept. 4.
A Pacific Gas and Electric electrical substation in Vacaville, Calif., on Sunday. Photo: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Thousands of customers were without power in California Monday night due to the intensifying record heat wave that's hitting much of the U.S. West.

By the numbers: Nearly 67,000 Californian customers were without power on Monday night, according to poweroutage.us. Ongoing power outages were affecting over 40,000 Pacific Gas and Electric Company customers across 28 counties, mostly in the San Francisco Bay Area's Contra Costa County, per a PG&E update.

Driving the news: Californian officials declared a power grid emergency earlier Monday due to the threats posed by the extreme heat.

  • The California Independent System Operator, which runs the state's power grid, issued an Energy Emergency Alert 2 on Monday evening.

Details: PG&E said a transformer in the Bay Area city of San Jose blew on Sunday night after days of blistering heat, NBC Bay Area reports.

  • Per a PG&E spokesperson's emailed statement on Monday night, 13,994 customers were without power in the East Bay; another 12,720 in South Bay; 1,980 in the Peninsula and 1,440 in North Bay.
  • No PG&E customers had lost power in San Francisco as of Monday night, according to the PG&E spokesperson.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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