(KTLA) – Nearly 64,000 Southern California Edison customers were without power on Thanksgiving Day as the region experienced dangerous fire weather conditions with widespread, strong, and noxious winds.
The public safety power cuts are designed to prevent the electrical system from igniting wildfire that could spread quickly in dry, windy conditions.
A small percentage of Edison’s 5 million customers were affected by the shutdowns, but that still means tens of thousands of Southern Californians.
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According to Edison’s website, Los Angeles County had 15,556 without power, Riverside County 20,322, Ventura County 14,987, San Bernardino County 8,852, and Orange County 4,127.
Power cuts were also being considered for a further 156,484 customers in the region.
Edison said it will restore power as soon as weather conditions permit, and crews have inspected the power lines.
Red flag warning
Strong Santa Ana winds with strong gusts, combined with low humidity, have set the stage for any fire that ignites to grow quickly.
A red flag warning was in effect for most of Los Angeles and Ventura counties from Wednesday through Friday evening, according to the National Weather Service.
The strongest winds were expected on Thanksgiving morning, with some residents waking up from fallen trees overnight.
A high wind warning due to noxious winds was in place in the San Fernando Valley and on the LA County’s coastline, primarily via the Malibu Corridor, through early Thursday morning.
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Strong gusts of wind in excess of 70 miles per hour swept through some mountain and valley areas in the LA and Ventura counties overnight and early morning, according to the weather service.
The winds are strong enough to bring down power lines that can fall and spark, which is why Edison began cutting the power.
Drivers have been warned to be prepared for fallen trees and power lines on the road.
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