Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) reminds customers in Sonoma and Napa Counties who can return home after evacuating during the Glass Fire to take steps to protect their family, neighbor, home or business. Residents should always follow directions from local authorities and first responders on when and how to return and PG&E wants its customers to be aware of possible electric and gas hazards inside the home.
“We have many crews working on removing unsafe conditions that are overhead and underground to ensure customers and businesses are safe for re-entry but we need everyone to be on the lookout for anything that could be a potential hazard beyond the meter,” said Anthony Knaapen, Safety Officer for Sonoma County for the Glass Fire Event.
Electric safety tips
• If you see downed power lines near your home, treat them as if they are energized. Keep yourself and others away from them. Call 911, then notify PG&E at 1-800-743-5002.
• Check for damaged household electrical wiring and turn off the power at the main electric switch if damage is suspected. Consult with an electrician.
• If power has not returned upon re-entry, unplug or turn off all electric appliances to avoid overloading circuits and fire hazards when power is restored. Turn appliances back on one at a time when conditions return to normal.
• Use LED candles or battery-operated flashlights to provide light until service is restored.
• If a generator is used as a backup power source, ensure it is properly installed by a licensed electrician. Improperly installed generators pose a significant danger to the customer but also to crews working to restore power.
Gas safety Tips
• If you smell the distinctive “rotten egg” odor of natural gas in or around your home or business, immediately call 911 and then PG&E at 1-800-743-5002.
• Do not attempt to restore gas service by turning the valve on the gas meter. PG&E will do this.
• Do not attempt to re-light the pilot lights on gas appliances. Let PG&E do this. Some water heaters, for example, need power to be property lit.
In order to restore gas service, gas crews must conduct a thorough assessment of damaged infrastructure and on-site inspections at each home and business. This process must occur before service can be restored and pilot lights can be relit. When this process takes place, it is helpful if customers allow PG&E crews access to their property in order to inspect equipment and restore service.
PG&E employees always carry their identification and are always willing to show it to you. Please ask to see valid identification before allowing anyone claiming to be a PG&E representative on their property.
If a person claiming to be a PG&E employee has identification and you still feel uncomfortable, call PG&E’s customer service line at 1-800-743-5000 to verify PG&E’s presence in the community.
If contact is not made during the initial visit, PG&E will leave a contact card.
For more information, visit pge.com/wildfiresupport.