By Brian Thomas –
Irvine residents were among more than 130,000 customers within Southern California Edison territory who had their power cut off over the weekend, part of rolling blackouts aimed at easing the strain on the electrical grid in the area.
With high temperatures expected through at least the middle of the week, the electric company is asking customers to voluntarily reduce their power usage.
“In anticipation of several days of high heat, Southern California Edison has taken the necessary steps to prepare for the heat wave and crews will be available to make repairs as quickly and safely as possible,” said Tony Edeson, SCE’s director of Grid Operations. “We are also reviewing scheduled maintenance outages and, when possible, scheduling work to take place in the morning.”
Twice since the mid-August heat wave began, the California Independent System Operator, the agency that is responsible for maintaining the reliability of grids, issued statewide Stage 3 emergencies and directed SCE to reduce its electric load. SCE then rotated blocks of customers, turning off their power for about an hour on Friday evening. Saturday evening had some 70,000 customers part of a rotating 15-minute power outage. Irvine was part of the Saturday evening outages.
As the heat continues, SCE says the flex-arts, a call for voluntary conservation, will be in effect from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. each day.
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