PG&E’s new approach to preventing its electrical equipment from sparking fires is by cutting power immediately — within a tenth of a second — when an object is sensed to have struck a line during strong fire conditions in high risk areas.
Trees blew over across the city, knocking down power lines and falling on at least three homes, amid winds that topped 60 mph in the hills.
A tree knocked down a power line near Clark Kerr campus and another fell across University Avenue, blocking access to the marina. More than 10,000 PG&E customers in and around Berkeley have been affected.
Downed trees and fallen traffic signals prompted police to warn people away from a few North Berkeley neighborhoods in the middle of the night.
The storm is expected to continue through Sunday evening into Monday.
PG&E has not indicated it is planning to cut power during the wind event, but said plans could change.
Berkeley will no longer funnel messages from AC Alert to Nixle to prevent redundant messages and confusion, the city announced.
Preparation advice, evacuation guidance and answers to your questions about air quality, power outages and defending your property.
The combination of heavy rains and wind can create hazardous conditions.
Winds reached 40-50 mph Monday night and Tuesday morning, with stronger gusts in the hills.
Thousands of customers were without internet Tuesday in Berkeley as Comcast responded to damaged fiber cables from fire at a shared PG&E utility pole in San Pablo.
The combination of strong winds, low humidity, and dry vegetation makes for extremely dangerous conditions, city officials said.