Electric powerlines (copy)

Power lines at sunset.

As many as 3,000 customers of Southern California Edison in Kern County could have their power shut off on Friday due to an elevated fire risk, a representative for the company said.

The communities of Bodfish, Lake Isabella and Wofford Heights could be affected by the gusty winds and elevated temperature, according to SoCal Edison spokeswoman Susan Cox.

She said customers have been notified in advance of the potential outage, which are known as public safety power shutoffs.

“(The company) just wanted to be safe and notify those customers in some areas of Kern County that there is a potential for a PSPS, but there’s been no shutoff at this time,” she said on Wednesday.

Temperatures on Friday are expected to be near the triple digits for Lake Isabella and Bodfish, with 10- to 15-mph winds in the morning, according to the National Weather Service.

Power companies use shutoffs to reduce the risk of fire during times of extreme weather conditions.

“Our commitment to deliver reliable electric service is something we take very seriously,” the company said in an explanation of the shutoffs. “This practice is aimed at keeping the public, our customers and our employees safe.”

The company said that once power is shut off, it will remain so for as long as the dangerous fire conditions persist.

“While getting the power back on is always a priority, doing it safely outweighs all else,” the company said.

(2) comments

Imthecook

[angry] This isn't right because there are too many people who have to have their power on just to use their medical equipment; just like I have to because I have asthma and it's been bad from allergies. And what about the people in ridgecrest? Haven't they been through enough? There has to be some other way to get through the winds.

Sheebe

Doesn't seem right they can do this. I had 2 strokes guess that don't matter. The prices they charge us is insane. Being that they buy electricity from other states. Some need electric for medical machines. Yet they get by with this.

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