Public Safety Power Shutoff
A Guide to the PSPS Outages and How Electriq Power Can Help
WHAT IS THE PUBLIC SAFETY POWER SHUTOFF (PSPS) EVENT?
The PSPS program is a safety measure taken by PG&E to preemptively de-energize transmission lines considered to be “at risk for failure” by the gusty winds and dry conditions that create a heightened fire threat. This leaves homeowners served by those power lines blacked out for some period of time. The power in those areas will remain offline until the weather threat subsides and PG&E crews can begin restoring power to their customers.
The 2019 PSPS is one of the worst outages experienced by California, with over 800,000 PG&E customers without power. PG&E has stated that the outages will range from 48 hours to several days and that they will “deploy a fleet of helicopters and more than 6,000 technicians to inspect the lines before they are brought back on.”
As long the threat of wildfires loom, blackouts will become more common in California. More people are turning to modern “home battery backup” systems to apply this power-on-demand capability and employ software intelligence for monitoring and customization. When used in conjunction with solar panels on the home, they are often referred to as “solar battery storage.”
HOW CAN ENERGY STORAGE HELP YOU?
We live in a 24-hour, 7-day a week society. Consumers lives have become totally dependent on uninterrupted power – we withdraw money from ATMs, our gas pumps driven by electricity, buy food using our credit cards, stay connected via WiFi routers, and we even need electricity to enter our homes after a long day at work!
One of the key features in the PowerPod is the automation. As soon as PG&E publicly warns that they will be turning off the power, the PowerPod can be set into a ‘Backup Mode’ that prioritizes its batteries to stay at a maximum charge while connected to the grid or solar. Once a PSPS power outage occurs, the PowerPod automatically provides power to pre-designated home appliances and devices. If your home has solar panels, it is possible to stay off the grid as long as there is sunshine and your energy home consumption doesn’t exceed the PV panels production. This will be very useful for longer outages, such as what might occur with a major disaster whether fire or earthquake related.
As the adoption of storage grows, the less stress is put onto the utility. This in turn will require the utility to not have to send as much power over transmission lines through the dense forest regions, or prime fire zones, and as a result, will not require power to be turned off.
We’re Here to Help
We get it. We’re Californians trying to help solve California problems. Contact us today to learn how we can help keep your power on.