A sweltering heat wave that has enveloped most parts of California causing a surge of demand on the power grid and energy companies made the decision to start rolling blackouts during the hottest part of the day.
The heat wave is ramping up this weekend, and some areas could reach triple-digit record highs, weather.com meteorologist Jonathan Belles said, adding that the temperatures are more typical of mid-summer than August.
An excessive heat warning was issued by the National Weather Service for Friday through Tuesday, and the combination of heat and wildfires prompted air quality warnings as well.
Ozone pollution in some areas reached levels Friday afternoon not seen in 10 years, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Gonzales said several different factors would play into whether the rolling blackouts continue.
“We’re dealing with weather, clouds, wildfires … these are quickly evolving situations, quickly changing,” she told the AP.
The situation will be evaluated on a day to day basis, she said.
Learn more about rolling blackouts
Many believed rolling blackouts were a thing of the past and, in California’s case residents have not experienced one for 20 years. But all that changed Friday when the lights went out on 350,000 thousand homes. Many were caught off guard and felt PG&E had not fully communicated the likelihood of this occurring. But the worst is yet to come as more rolling blackouts are planned for the coming week. That said, it is important to know that certain preparedness items can provide safety and protection when you are off the grid during the hottest part of the year.
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