California wildfire leads to Santa Barbara power outage

The Thomas wildfire in Ventura County, California has interrupted the transmission lines for the Santa Barbara area, leaving more than 85,000 customers without electric power. The Santa Barbara area transmission emergency is not affecting other parts of SCE’s transmission system.

As soon as the area is safe for restoration, SCE crews will assess the damage and redirect power to affected customers. However, given the unpredictability of the fire, SCE is asking customers currently without electricity to prepare for the possibility of an extended power outage.

The utility is coordinating its emergency efforts with state, county and local officials. Medical Baseline, Critical Care and Essential Use customers have been alerted.

SCE reminds customers experiencing a service interruption in the Santa Barbara area that they do not need to call SCE to report a power outage. SCE will provide the latest information on the restoration of electrical service in the Santa Barbara area on its website and via Twitter and Facebook. Customers may also download the SCE outages app on their smartphones.

SCE is requesting customers without power to turn off the lights in any unoccupied rooms, except for a single lightbulb, which will be the signal that power has been restored. Turning off appliances helps ensure against overloading, which could delay the restoration of service.

When service is restored, SCE is requesting residential and commercial customers to significantly reduce power consumption to provide maximum coverage to the entire Santa Barbara area.

An Edison International company, SCE is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of about 15 million via 5 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central, Coastal and Southern California.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at

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