Cal ISO Extends Flex Alert: Cut Back on Electricity

August 31, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

The California Independent System Operator, which manages the state’s power grid, issued a statewide Flex Alert that will be in effect from 1 to 10 p.m. tomorrow, calling for voluntary electricity
conservation.

“Consumers are urged to conserve electricity especially during the late afternoon when air conditioners typically are at peak use,” the California ISO said in a statement. “Consumers can help avoid power interruptions by turning off all unnecessary lights, using major appliances before 1 p.m. and after 10 p.m. and setting air conditioners to 78 degrees or higher.”

The ISO noted that power demand could reach record levels on Friday thanks to the continuing heat wave. Power supplies are expected to be tight nationwide, as will natural gas supplies in Southern California, due to operating limitations on the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility near Porter Ranch, according to Cal-ISO.

“Southern California Gas Co. and the ISO are following the processes established to manage gas supply in the LA Basin during the limitations placed on the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility,” according to Cal-ISO. “The generation fleet has performed well so far during this prolonged heat wave without any major outages.”

8,000 People Still Without Power in Boyle Heights

August 30, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

More than 8,200 Department of Water and Power customers were without electricity in the Boyle Heights area today as outages continued to affect the Southland amid a sweltering heat wave.

The DWP blamed “equipment overloading” at the distributing station serving the area, as customers used air conditioners to seek relief from scorching temperatures. Crews were working to reroute circuits in an effort to restore service, estimated to happen by midnight, according to the utility.

In addition, they are installing portable high-voltage equipment to pick up the load if rerouting does not permit full restoration,” according to a DWP statement.

Another 3,000 customers in other city neighborhoods — including the Hollywood Hills, Reseda, Lake Balboa, Sun Valley, Pacoima, Van Nuys and Arleta — were also without power this afternoon.

To report outages in other areas, call 1-800-DIAL-DWP.

Customers were urged to reduce their use of electricity to alleviate strain on overloaded equipment by keeping thermostats set at 78 degrees; closing curtains, blinds and drapes to block out sunlight and keep home interiors cool; and avoiding use of major appliances between 2 p.m. and 10 p.m., when electricity demand is highest.

Outage status can be checked at www.ladwp.com or via the DWP’s Twitter account: @LADWP.

Heat Wave Raises Wildfire Fears

June 22, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Oppressive summer heat continued to bake parts of the Southland Wednesday, and forecasters warned that dry, gusting winds will create a heightened risk of wildfires when the heat wave continues Thursday.

The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning that will be in effect from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday in the Los Angeles County mountains and Angeles National Forest, indicating conditions ripe for wildfires.

“Onshore winds are expected to strengthen on Thursday with gusts between 25 to 25 mph in the Los Angeles County mountains, strongest through the

highway 14 corridor into the Antelope Valley foothills,” according to the NWS.

“With this expected wind increase, continued heat and low humidities, and drying vegetation, critical fire conditions are expected.”

Forecasters said “locally critical fire conditions” are expected in the Antelope Valley foothills.

The NWS had earlier issued a fire weather watch for the Antelope Valley on Thursday, but it later canceled that watch.

In addition to the gusting winds in the mountains, humidity levels were expected to dip to between 3 and 15 percent, with the lowest levels in higher elevation areas.

Meanwhile, a strong ridge of high pressure remained parked over Arizona, and it is expected to continue bringing us elevated temperatures through the rest of the week. Temperatures in the Antelope Valley are expected between 106 and 110 degrees through Friday, dipping to between 104 and 108 over the weekend.

Excessive heat warnings that had been expected to end late Thursday were extended through the weekend for some area. The warning will be in effect until 9 p.m. Sunday for the Antelope Valley and the Los Angeles County Mountains excluding the Santa Monica range.

A less-severe heat advisory expired at 9 p.m. Wednesday for the San Fernando and San Gabriel valleys and the Santa Monica Mountains, but residents in those areas, especially in areas in canyons and hillsides with narrow streets, were urged to keep track of weather conditions that could prompt more red flag warning.

Meanwhile, forecasters warned that the heat can still be dangerous.

“The very high temperatures could create a dangerous situation in which heat-related illnesses are possible,” according to the NWS. “Temperatures inside vehicles, even if the windows are partially open, can quickly rise to life-threatening levels.

“Never, ever leave people or pets in enclosed vehicles, even for a short period of time.”

People who work outdoors were urged to schedule strenuous activity for early morning or evening, wear lightweight clothing and drink plenty of water.

The California Independent System Operator, which manages the statewide power grid, again issued a Flex Alert for Wednesday. It took effect at 2 p.m. and remained in force until 9 p.m., just like on Tuesday.

A Flex Alert is issued when the electrical grid is “under stress,” generally from increased power usage due to hot weather.

As part of the alert, residents were urged to make an extra effort to conserve during late afternoon hours, when air conditioners tend to be used most. The agency predicted peak usage on Wednesday would exceed 46,600 megawatts, and noted that widespread air-condition use can put strain on the electrical system.

 

Flex Alert: Heat Wave Prompts Call to Cut Energy

June 20, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

With a heat wave gripping the region, a Flex Alert urging residents to voluntarily conserve electricity to ease demand on the statewide power system was in effect today, and will be repeated Wednesday afternoon.

The Flex Alert issued by the California Independent System Operator, which manages the statewide power grid, took effect at 2 p.m. and will remain in force until 9 p.m. It will be in effect during the same hours Wednesday.

Cal-ISO officials urged residents to make an extra effort to conserve during late afternoon hours, when air conditioners tend to be used most. The agency predicted peak usage on Tuesday and Wednesday to exceed 47,000 megawatts, and noted that widespread air-condition use can put strain on the electrical system.

According to Cal-ISO’s website, electrical demand late Monday afternoon reached nearly 43,800 megawatts. Demand on Sunday peaked at just more than 39,000 megawatts. The highest demand ever recorded by the system was 50,270 megawatts, which occurred on July 24, 2006.

A Flex Alert is issued when the electrical grid is “under stress,” generally from increased power usage due to hot weather.

Cal-ISO officials urged residents to take steps such as:

— setting thermostats at 78 degrees or higher;

— close drapes and use fans to cool rooms;

— turn off unnecessary lights and appliances; and

— delay using major appliances until early in the morning or late in the evening.

No Let Up to Scorching Heat

September 10, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

The Southland will bake again today as the region’s heat wave intensifies and temperatures reach or surpass the century mark over a wide area.

The valleys and mountain areas at low elevations again will be Southern California’s hottest spots, but metropolitan Los Angeles will not be spared. Highs in downtown L.A. today are expected to reach 99 degrees Fahrenheit.

The waters off Southern California beaches are beautiful, but even they couldn’t escape the intense heat that resulted in weather experts issuing several days of extreme heat warnings in the Southland. Some area’s recorded 85 degrees by 9 a.m.; Temperatures recorded in Eagle Rock reached 100 degrees by 2 p.m. Many people sought refuge from the heat at area beaches, which hit 85 degrees during the day, but cooled off to 65 at night.  (Photo by Fred Zermeno)

The waters off Southern California beaches are beautiful, but even they couldn’t escape the intense heat that resulted in weather experts issuing several days of extreme heat warnings in the Southland. Some area’s recorded 85 degrees by 9 a.m.; Temperatures recorded in Eagle Rock reached 100 degrees by 2 p.m. Many people sought refuge from the heat at area beaches, which hit 85 degrees during the day, but cooled off to 65 at night. (Photo by Fred Zermeno)

“Maximum temperatures will reach dangerous levels across much of Southern California this week,” according to a National Weather Service statement. An excessive heat warning was issued for the San Gabriel and Santa Monica mountains in both Los Angeles and Ventura counties and the San Fernando, San Gabriel and Santa Clarita valleys. It will be in force until 8 p.m. today.

High temperatures are expected to peak today, with a slight cool down over the weekend, although temperatures will remain above normal, forecasters said.

Forecasters said those at greatest risk of suffering heat-related ailments were infants, the elderly, the homeless, outdoor workers, people taking part in outdoor activities in the heat, and pets without access to shade.

They urged residents to drink plenty of water; wear light-colored and lightweight clothing; stay out of the midday sun; check on neighbors and the elderly to make sure they are not being overwhelmed by the heat; and never, ever leave children, the elderly, or pets in a vehicle parked in hot weather.

The city and County of Los Angeles have both extended hours of operation at public cooling centers, which include local recreation centers and public libraries. City facilities can be found by calling 311; for county locations, dial 211.

On Wednesday, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power officials again urged customers to conserve energy, as the unrelenting heat wave drives up the energy demand in Los Angeles, pushing usage closer to an all-time high.

LADWP officials asked the public to scale back on energy use to relieve the strain on the power grid. Energy demand is anticipated to again surpass Tuesday’s peak of 5,926 megawatts – with usage today projected at around 6,200 megawatts.

That would be just under the all-time peak of 6,396 megawatts set last September. The average daily energy use during the summer is 4,700 megawatts, usually rising in late August and September.

LADWP officials said customers should try to “stay comfortable’’ in the heat, while also taking steps such as holding back on using too much energy between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., when use is traditionally the highest.

Customers were urged to conserve by taking steps such as:

– setting thermostats to 78 degrees or higher;

– limiting the use of major appliances during peak hours;

– closing drapes and blinds to reduce heat;

– turning off lights and other equipment when not in use; and

– unplugging items like cell phone chargers, DVD players and microwave ovens that can use energy even when turned off.

 

Customers are also asked to report any power loss to the LADWP by calling (800) 342-5397.

 

Southland to Sizzle This Weekend

August 13, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

High temperatures are expected across the Southland over the next several days, prompting calls to reduce energy use and activity that could lead to heat-related illnesses.

The hottest conditions will prevail between today and Sunday, with temperatures up to 10 degrees above normal in inland areas, the National Weather Service monitoring office in Oxnard said in a statement posted on its website.

Temperatures will range from 85 to 95 degrees in coastal and inland areas, with thriple digits highs in the San Gabriel and San Fernando valleys.

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) is urging customers to conserve energy use where possible, especially between the hours of 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., while not jeopardizing their health and safety.

“During times of extreme heat, we strongly encourage customers to conserve energy wherever possible as long as it does not jeopardize anyone’s own health or safety or the health and safety of their pets,” General Manager Marcie Edwards said.

Extreme heat not only leads to more people operating their air conditioners all at once but also causes other appliances to work harder in order to perform. Reducing energy use can help prevent outages, said the DWP.

The Weather Service said hot conditions can also “result in an increase in heat-related illnesses, especially to the homeless, elderly, infants, outdoor workers, and those participating in outdoor activities.”

Residents are urged to check on elderly family members and neighbors and help them find refuge from the heat if needed. Good places to go include shopping malls, local libraries and senior centers, which are air-conditioned.

County officials urged people to take  advantage of cooling centers to escape the heat. A list of cooling centers is available online at www.publichealth.lacounty.gov.

Extra precautions, including drinking plenty of cool water, avoiding over exertion and prolonged periods in the sun, should be taken to prevent dehydration that can lead to heat stroke, which can prove deadly. Alcohol and sugary and caffeinated drinks can speed up dehydration, so they should be avoided, according to county health officials.

If you need to exercise outdoors, it’s best to do it in the early morning or late afternoon, avoiding the hottest temperatures throughout the day,

As always, health and law enforcement officials reminded Southlanders to not leave children or pets unattended in vehicles where the temperatures can quickly rise into the triple digits, posing a higher risk of heat related illness and even death.

“The extended period of hot and dry conditions will also bring elevated fire danger,” but there were no immediate forecasts of Santa Ana winds, added the NWS’ statement.

A 7-day forecast indicated temperature highs would climb from 81 Tuesday to 91 Thursday in downtown L.A. and from 91 today to 102 Thursday in Woodland Hills. The Antelope Valley will be at that level as well even though temperatures there are often higher than in the rest of the region.

Hot Weather Prompts Heat Warnings

June 18, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Summer doesn’t officially begin until Sunday, but the Southland was basking Wednesday in some summer-like conditions, and authorities urged the public to take some simple common-sense steps to avoid heat-related ailments.

Temperatures are expected to be 15 to 25 degrees above normal across Southern California through the end of the weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

By midday, temperatures had already reached 99 in Lancaster and 98 in Palmdale. Pasadena and Burbank both reached the mid-80s.

Forecasters said the heat wave is expected to continue into early next week, with the  highest temperatures expected over the weekend.

State workplace-safety officials called on employers with outdoor workers to protect them from the intense temperatures.

“During times of sustained high heat, it is especially important that employers take the necessary steps to prevent heat illness for their outdoor workers,” said Christine Baker, director of the state Department of Industrial Relations.

California’s 10-year-old regulations for heat-illness prevention were amended effective May 1. The changes clarify requirements related to the provision of water rest and shade protections for all outdoor workers, which are detailed in Cal/OSHA’s guidance on the new requirements.

Employer requirements under the heat regulation include:

— training for all employees and supervisors about heat-illness prevention;

— provision of cool, fresh water as close as practicable to the work area at no cost to workers

— shade provided whenever the temperature rises above 80 degrees Fahrenheit and enough shade to accommodate the number of workers taking a break;

— encouragement of employees to take cool-down rests and monitoring for symptoms of heat illness; and

— acclimatization to ensure that workers, especially new hires, safely adapt to increased temperatures during a heat wave.

Special high-heat procedures are also required when temperatures reach 95 degrees or higher

and workers are at greater risk. At these times, supervisors must take the following extra precautions:

— observe workers for signs and symptoms of heat illness;

— hold pre-shift meetings on safety and remind workers to drink water frequently;

— require that workers take a cool-down rest every two hours; and

— ensure effective communication systems are in place so that emergency assistance can be summoned immediately if necessary.

Cal/OSHA inspects work sites in outdoor industries such as agriculture, construction, landscaping, and others throughout the heat season. Through partnerships with various employer and worker organizations in different industries, the agency also provides consultation, outreach and training on heat illness prevention.

Monterey Park Opens ‘Cooling Center’ During Heat Wave

March 13, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

With temperatures forecasted to be in the 90s this weekend, the city of Monterey Park has announced it will open the Langley Senior Center Saturday and Sunday (March 13-15) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. as a community cooling center.

People of all ages are encouraged to go to the air-conditioned center to escape the heat and utilize the drinking water and restroom facilities.

The high temperatures are especially dangerous for the elderly and the very  young.

Heat stress can be a real danger to many people. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), people who are a greater risk for heat related illness are…

– Infants and young children

– People aged 65 or older

– People who have a mental illness

– Those who are physically ill, especially with heart disease or high blood pressure

Other cooling centers may be available to Monterey Park residents. The County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health also provides a list of other nearby community cooling centers on their website at http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/index.htm .

The city also reminded residents to never  leave anyone, adults or children, or pets in a closed, parked vehicle. The temperature in a car can go over 100 degrees in less than 5 minutes.

Langley Senior Center is located at 400 W. Emerson Ave, Monterey Park, CA 91754, at the corner of Emerson and Ynez Avenues. For more information contact the center at (626) 307-1395.

Weekend Heat Wave Could Break Records

March 12, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Record-breaking heat is expected in the Southland this weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

“Temperatures well above normal … will be prevalent by Friday,” said an NWS statement Wednesday. “By the weekend, record-breaking heat is forecast …”

NWS forecasters said Saturday and Sunday highs could be 20 degrees above normal. They attributed the expected hot spell to an unseasonably hot air mass that will develop this weekend as a strong ridge of high pressure aloft builds in the region.

Daytime highs Saturday and Sunday will range from the 80s to lower 90s at the coast and from the mid 80s to mid 90s in the valleys and foothills, the statement said.

NWS forecasters urged residents and visitors to avoid heat stress, including by scheduling outdoor activities in the morning or evening to avoid the day’s strongest heat, wearing light clothing if engaging in strenuous activities, and staying hydrated.

Also forcefully recommended: “Never, ever leave children, pets or the elderly alone in the car.”

The weather service expressed concern for people who’ll take part in Sunday’s L.A. Marathon, saying they need to be aware of the potential for serious heat-related problems.

Also appearing concerned are the marathon’s organizers. The entire field will start at Dodger Stadium at 6:55 a.m., 30 minutes earlier than originally scheduled in an effort to beat the heat.

Other steps will be taken to better ensure runner safety. The race will have wave starts to ensure proper runner spacing and enable more efficient replenishment of supplies at aid stations. Additional water and Gatorade Endurance Formula will be provided at all 24 aid stations.

“Cooling buses” will be stationed along the course and at the finish line; misting stations, cold towels and ice will be provided.

“While we are anticipating warmer temperatures for Sunday’s race, we are confident in our level of preparedness and the resources we have available to support a positive race day experience for all participants,” Dr. Glenn Ault, the race’s medical director, said this week.

Sunday’s high in metropolitan Los Angeles, an area that takes in the marathon course, is forecast to be 91, compared to 75 today.

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