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Flex Alert extended to Thursday with an additional hour at each end

High Temperatures, Heat Wave (AP FILE)
Posted at 9:18 PM, Sep 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-08 00:30:28-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — With the oppressive heat set to see out the week, energy providers and grid operators are asking the public to take action to conserve energy again on Thursday, September 8th.

The California Independent system Operator (CAISO) has extended the Flex Alert for another day, extending the hours for September 8th. Instead of 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm, Thursday’s Flex Alert will run from 3:00 pm until 10:00 pm.

California and other western states are still experiencing unprecedented temperatures. Cities all over the state have logged new record highs this week, and September 2022 is already on track to be the warmest September on the books.

On Wednesday, the CAISO did issue a Level 3 Alert, which comes with the possibility of rolling blackouts to try and preserve the grid. According to Pacific Gas & Electric, the CAISO has not yet asked electricity providers to implement rolling outages, but they have already given advanced notification to approximately 525,000 customers to prepare them for the possibility.

To prepare for the Flex Alert period, the CAISO suggests pre-cooling your home early in the day to as low as 72 degrees. Next try to avoid using major appliances, such as laundry machines and ovens, during the Flex Alert period, instead scheduling those chores for early in the day or later, after the Flex Alert has expired. To keep your home as cool as possible, close window curtains and blinds. The heat inside your home can be reduced by up to 45 percent when window coverings are completely closed. Finally, charge all your electronic devices before the Flex Alert starts at 3:00 pm in order to avoid having to plug them in during the Flex Alert.

This extreme heat not only poses a threat to the electrical grid from overloading, but such high temperatures have the possibility of damaging electrical equipment as well. In response to this, PG&E has activated its Emergency Operations Center and is mobilizing the necessary personnel and materials to be able to restore power safely and efficiently, according to a press release by the energy provider.

For more information about Flex Alerts, and to subscribe to receive automatic notifications when a Flex Alert is issued, visit the California Independent System Operator’s website.