For immediate release – October 8, 2019
This is a joint release from the following utilities: Calaveras County Water District (CCWD), City of Angels Camp, San Andreas Sanitary District (SASD), Blue Lake Springs Mutual Water Company (BLSMWC), Union Public Utility District (UPUD), Calaveras Public Utility District (CPUD), Valley Springs Public Utilities District (VSPUD) and Murphys Sanitary District (MSD).
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) announced Tuesday that power is likely to be shut off to much of Calaveras County at midnight on Tuesday October 8 and could remain off for as long as five days. Water and sewer utilities across Calaveras County are jointly urging customers to conserve water and only use it for critical health and safety needs during PG&E’s planned Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS).
While most county water and sewer utilities have backup generators for key infrastructure facilities, indoor and outdoor water conservation will help lessen the load on these generators during power outages, as well as reducing the negative impacts of possible generator failures, such as loss of water treatment capacity or sewage spills. Utilities urge customers to avoid any unnecessary uses of water, including watering lawns and outdoor landscaping, washing vehicles, filling swimming pools, washing off hardscapes, flushing toilets after every use, washing clothes, running the dishwasher and taking baths or long showers.
County residents should also be aware that small electric septic tank pumps will not function during power outages (unless a home backup generator is hooked up) and septic tanks could overflow. Even some homes that are connected to a sewer collection system use septic tank pump systems or grinder pump systems, which require power to function. It is very important to conserve water that will enter the septic tank, including water used in sinks, toilets, showers, washers, etc. In particular, sewage grinder pump tanks have essentially no storage at all and could overflow even with very little water usage. Residents in that situation would have to stop the flow of water immediately.
Utilities urge all county residents to be prepared for tonight’s planned power shutdown by visiting www.prepareforpowerdown.com for detailed information.
For more information from PG&E on this PSPS event, go to www.pge.com or call 800-743-5002.