UPDATE: 10:15 a.m. Monday, Dec. 7, 2020 - Citing improved conditions, Pacific Gas & Electric has canceled plans to turn off power to some central California customers Monday to prevent the risk of wildfires being ignited in windy, dry weather.
About 8,500 customers in Fresno, Madera, Mariposa, Tulare and Tuolumne counties were notified they would not be subjected to a public safety power shutoff. Originally, power cuts were considered for about 132,000 customers.
BUTTE COUNTY, Calif. - PG&E's PSPS on Dec. 7, will not impact anyone in Butte County, but that is not stopping Butte County Cal Fire from preparing for the wind event that is on the way.
Because of the dry weather and the low precipitation, Butte County Cal Fire is still preparing for the wind event. Air Attack Base Battalion Chief Shem Hawkins says they have an extra Air Craft from Grass Valley at the Chico Air Attack Base and they are also staffing extra.
"What we have today is one tanker more than what we are allotted in the summertime. So we have more planes here than what we have in the summertime. Normally we have one Air Tanker, today we have two Air Tankers and the Air Attack, which is the coordination command and control aircraft," said Chief Hawkins.
Hawkins says this is rare for this time of the year.
"We are typically funded through October and now that we are into December e have really crossed that threshold, so this is a one-off experience for me," said Chief Hawkins.
Cal Fire Captain John Gaddie says Cal Fire is taking precautions because of the limited precipitation this year.
"We look at the weather we look at the fuels, our fuels are dry there is potential for a fire, so we are keeping our staffing according to that," said Captain Gaddie.
Gaddie also wants to remind people to be careful if they did burn on your property recently.
"Dooryard burning has been suspended in Butte County, in the unincorporated areas in Butte County. So please don't burn. We have had several people who have burned or even if you burned in the last few days they could have embers, so please check them to make sure they are cool, if they are not please extinguish them completely," said Captain Gaddie.
The extra staffing at the Air Attack Base will go through Tuesday, and the extra staffing for the Department will go through the end of December.