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Energy & Science

PG&E Reduces Scope of Blackouts to Prevent California Wildfires

California Expects Blackouts Within Hours, Governor Orders Probe
Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

PG&E Corp. said it will likely cut power starting early Thursday to about 16,000 customers in 12 counties across northern California to prevent live wires from sparking wildfires during windy conditions. 

The California utility giant reduced the scope of its blackouts from an earlier estimate of about 29,000 customers, according to a posting on its website. The shutoffs will start ahead of dry, gusty winds that are forecast to return to the region, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a red flag warning for Thursday in the Sacramento valley and nearby mountain ranges.