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Mixed Impressions Of PGE Wildfire Safety Progress

A PG and E official outlined what he indicated was great progress in helping to reduce the wildfire danger, in what’s become an annual presentation to Nevada County Supervisors. At their meeting on Tuesday, Governmental Affairs Representative, Brandon Sanders, said, among other things, that the utility has now installed around 30 weather stations and eight high-definition detection cameras. Also, overhead system hardening of 53 line miles through the end of last year, to improve resiliency and reliability in reducing the scope and length of power outages. But, in a staff report, Craig Griesbach, the county’s Director of Emergency Services, said various communities, including within Supervisorial District Four, have undergone continual outages, due to the increased use of the Enhanced Powerline Safety Settings program. That’s where electricity is shut off within a tenth of a second of a branch, or other object or animal, contacting a line. But District Four Supervisor Sue Hoek made no reference to that in largely praising PG and E’s efforts…

click to listen to Sue Hoek

But Sanders also acknowledged that PG and E’s enhanced tree trimming and vegetation clearing program was being phased out, due to its ineffectiveness, with the more emphasis on the Safety Settings program. And that didn’t go over very well with District One Supervisor Heidi Hall…

click to listen to Heidi Hall

Griesbach also stated in the report that the Safety Settings program has been causing hardship and confusion throughout the community.

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