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Glendale’s utility asks customers to conserve energy to avoid more blackouts

Turning down or lowering air conditioners can conserve energy, GWP says.
With temperatures expected to rise this weekend, Glendale utility officials are asking residents to lower or turn of air conditioners and conserve energy in other ways. It’s a precaution to prevent rolling blackouts that were ordered last week to protect comprised equipment.
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times )

Glendale’s utility is encouraging local residents to conserve as much energy as possible beginning Thursday — as temperatures rise — as a precaution to avoid rolling blackouts the city ordered last week to protect compromised equipment.

Customers may receive “Peak Day Alert” phone calls and emails on Friday and Saturday asking them to conserve energy by setting thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, using fans instead of air conditioners, delaying the use of major appliances until the evening, and other methods, according to a statement from Glendale Water & Power released Wednesday.

“High temperatures are expected through the weekend with limited cooling off temps at night, which can cause strain to our weakened distribution system,” the utility’s general manager, Steve Zurn, said in the statement.

Forced outages were instituted from last Wednesday to Sunday to protect overstrained equipment as a result of a transformer explosion in July and subsequent cable failure, according to a statement released by GWP on Monday.


While the utility fixed secondary distribution cables, the main transformer bank at the Rossmoyne substation won’t be repaired until the end of next week, according to Glendale city spokeswoman Eliza Papazian.

“We don’t anticipate having any more forced blackouts and are not planning for them,” Papazian added.

Blackouts that were ordered last week affected three areas of the city and were done in one-hour increments.

The utility offered a list of additional conservation tips:


  • Close all curtains and blinds to keep out direct sunlight.
  • Turn off lights in rooms that are not in use.
  • Unplug cellphone chargers, microwave ovens and other appliances that use energy even when turned off or in sleep mode.
  • Use LED light bulbs whenever possible because they don’t give off heat.
  • Check weather stripping on doors and windows so cool air doesn’t escape.
  • Make sure all HVAC vents are clean and filters have been replaced.
  • Air-dry dishes.
  • Keep refrigerators full — a full fridge uses less energy. If experiencing an outage, limit the number of times you open and close the refrigerator.

Residents can also cool off at the following “cooling stations” in Glendale through the weekend:

Adult Recreation Center
201 E. Colorado St., 91205
(818) 548-3775
Thursday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Friday through Sunday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Pacific Community Center
501 S. Pacific Ave., 91204
(818) 548-4098
Thursday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday through Sunday: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

High temperatures should break Sunday and be in the low 80s on Monday, according to the National Weather Service.


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