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PG&E Tells Customers To Cut Power Use During Labor Day Holiday Heatwave

Pacific Gas and Electric Company is asking customers to conserve electricity during afternoon and evening hours over the Labor Day holiday weekend. The request comes after the state's power grid operator issued a Flex Alert, based on a forecast of increased power demand due to expected high temperatures.

PG&E Power Conservation Tips:

  • Avoid using electrical appliances and devices from 3 p.m. until 9 p.m. Put off tasks such as vacuuming, laundry, dish washing and computer time until after 9 p.m.
  • Adjust your thermostat to 78 degrees or higher or turn it off if you will be away from home. Use a fan instead of air conditioning when possible.
  • Draw drapes and turn off unnecessary lighting.
  • Limit the opening of refrigerators, which is a major user of electricity in most homes. The average refrigerator is opened 33 times a day.
  • Keep refrigerator full (with bottles of water if nothing else) and unplug your second refrigerator, if you have one.
  • Avoid using the oven. Instead, cook on the stove, use a microwave or grill outside.
  • Set your pool pump to run overnight instead of during the day.

Customers are asked to reduce their energy use from 3:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. each day, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, when air conditioners consume most of the power used. The utility says conservation will help make sure they can meet demand and avoid rolling blackouts. That conservation window also represents a time of day when extreme temperatures will reach a peak with very little nighttime relief expected.

Forecasters are warning that extend exposure to the heat could lead to heat related illness among the general population, including people, pets, and livestock. They advise people to seek cooler spaces with air conditioning.

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