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Nearly 100,000 Edison customers may lose power amid fire risk

A Southern California Edison lineman grounds a power line in La Habra.
(Don Kelsen / Los Angeles Times)

Nearly 100,000 Southern California Edison customers across six counties could see their power shut off Friday as part of a larger effort by the utility to reduce the risk of wildfires during windy conditions, officials said.

As of Friday morning, 13,357 customers were experiencing power outages in the utilities’ service area, according to Edison spokeswoman Taelor Bakewell. Affected households are in Los Angeles, Orange, Kern, San Bernardino and Ventura counties. More people in these five areas, along with Riverside County, could still lose power, depending on the ferocity and direction of the Santa Ana winds.

“We know how disruptive it can be, and this is a tough weekend to go through it — even my grandparents can be affected — but we live in Southern California and we can face so many natural disasters,” Bakewell said. “We’re just trying to mitigate as many risks as we can, and we appreciate everyone’s patience as we work to protect the community.”

As howling gales continue to whip through the region, officials at the National Weather Service are predicting a mostly sunny day after Thanksgiving, with northeast winds of up to 45 miles per hour from Malibu to the Hollywood Hills.

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A wind advisory will remain in effect until 3 p.m. and a red-flag warning for extreme fire danger has been extended until 6 p.m. Saturday for the mountains in Los Angeles and Ventura counties and the Santa Clarita Valley. Highs will be in the mid-60s to mid-70s throughout the region, while air quality is in the good to moderate range.

Kristen Stewart, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service, said California is in for a dry winter “as well as most of the West coast, really.

“We’re in a La Nina pattern, it will be warmer than normal, and after the long drought we’ve had, we really need rain, but we’re not going to get it. “

Edison customers can sign up for text alerts about power outages at (800) 655-4555 or go to www.sce.com/psps and type in your address to check your status.

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“I know it’s nice to light candles around the holidays,” Bakewell said, “but we’re encouraging people to use flashlights for safety.”


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