Lights Out: PG&E Study Finds Power Outages Could Become Rampant In Northern California If Aging Lines Aren’t Replaced

Power Line
Power Line

Continued power outages as a result of electric-wire failures in Northern California could drastically increase in the next few years if PG&E Corp. does not up its replacement of aging equipment, according to a utility-commissioned analysis.

The current rate of PG&E’s replacement of electrical-lines fails to prevent a plethora of electrically related failures brought on by the effect of aging wires. 

At the current rate PG&E proposed its replacement of electric-wire, PG&E customers could expect a doubling of sustained power outages in 15 years and a fourfold increase in 30 years, according to the analysis by the National Electric Testing, Research and Applications Center at Georgia Tech.

To avoid this outcome, the utility company would need to have a replacement of, at the very least, 1,200 miles of its oldest distribution lines each year. According to study by doing would completely refresh the utility’s distribution system every 67 years.

The currently proposed level of replacement, roughly 100 circuit miles, would take the utility company about 230 years to refresh its distribution system.


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