The following press release was issued by the Calaveras County Water District.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) announced Monday October 21 that power is likely to be shut off to a portion of Calaveras County at around 2 p.m. on Wednesday October 23 and could remain off for up to 48 hours. CCWD asks customers who lose power to conserve water during the Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS). For more information, go to www.ccwd.org/psps.
CCWD customers may be affected in the following areas: Dorrington, Camp Connell, Arnold, Avery, Forest Meadows, Douglas Flat, Vallecito, Sheep Ranch, West Point and Wilseyville.
While CCWD has 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. Some homes that are connected to the 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 to avoid a spill.
Due to the concerns about septic tanks overflowing during the power outage, the District is asking sewer customers who live in Mill Woods, West Point and Wilseyville to only use water for critical health and safety needs. These customers are served by septic tanks maintained by CCWD.
CCWD urges 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.