Prepare your business for a Public Safety Power Shutoff

PG&E has implemented an emergency preparedness program, Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS).  PSPS may be implemented under certain conditions during a wildfire and the duration may be several days. To assist our regulated businesses, we offer the following tips to prepare for a power outage in addition to comprehensive information on PG&E’s websi​te​.

Hazardous Materials/Waste Facilities

In advance of a PSPS, identify areas of your facility that may require backup power to safely control exposures to and prevent releases of hazardous materials.  The installation of permanent and temporary gasoline or diesel-powered generators and back-up battery systems may require approval from building, fire, air quality, and hazardous materials agencies.  Please contact your local agencies for approval requirements.  DEH plan submittal requirements for equipment and facilities that utilize hazardous materials are accessible by clicking here. 

During a PSPS:

1. Prevent access to any areas of your facility where the lack of ventilation, monitoring or controls may increase the likelihood of exposure to hazardous materials through physical contact or inhalation.

​2. Do not operate hazardous materials systems that rely upon electronic monitoring systems and controls for safe operation (e.g. fueling facilities, toxic gas facilities)

​​3. Do not dispense hazardous materials using unapproved methods or equipment. 

​​Solid/Medical Waste Facilities

​In advance of a power outage, review and update your facility/business technical documents (e.g., Medical Waste Management Plan, Report of Facility Information, etc.) specific to PSPS and follow the approved emergency operations plan of action. If you do not need to operate during a PSPS or it is unsafe to do so, we recommend you remain closed for the duration of the event.         

During an extended power outage:​

​​1. Medical Waste Generators - maintain your facility medical waste pick up frequency or increase frequency if you cannot maintain refrigeration of your medical waste.  If Medical Waste cannot safely be stored, we recommend ceasing operations that generate it, if possible.

2. Solid Waste/Compost Facilities - follow the Report of Facility Information or Report of Compost Site Information document for power outages and emergency operations. If the power outage is prolonged, you may need to send materials directly to a landfill.

3. Body Art Facilities – It is recommended that you cease operations for the duration of the power outage. Electricity is required to assure proper Health & Safety is maintained during body art procedures.

Consumer Protection Division

Food Facilities (Restaurants, Grocery Stores, Cafes, etc.)   

• In advance of a power outage, The Consumer Protection Division (CPD) recommends that food facilities develop an action plan and obtain appropriate emergency supplies to prepare for temporary power shut off.  When a power outage occurs, potentially hazardous foods (PHFs) are of utmost concern due to the potential growth of bacteria during the time the food is held in the temperature danger zone (41°F to 135°F). 

• In the event of power outage, food facilities are to voluntary close. An exception is applied to facilities that sell only prepackaged non-potentially hazardous foods if adequate lighting is available and the business can operate without risk to consumers and employees.

Please follow ​Planning For a Rolling Power Outage guideline devised by County of Santa Clara, Environmental Health Department, Consumer Protection Division. ​

• During a power outage:​

​​1. Discontinue all food preparation activities. 

2. Do not use cooking equipment. 

3. Return PHFs to refrigerator or freezer.

4. Minimize the opening of refrigeration units.

​​​​​​​Prior to reopening and resuming food preparation activities:

1. Discard unsafe PHFs.  If you have any questions regarding the safety of specific foods, contact your local inspector. When in doubt, throw it out. 

2. Ensure electricity and gas services have been restored and circuit breakers have been properly reset.​

3. Ensure all equipment in the facility is working properly, including refrigeration, lighting, hot holding, ventilation, faucets with cold and hot running potable water under pressure and a minimum temperature of 120°F for warewashing and 100°F for handwashing as well as functional toilet facilities.

Recreational Bodies of Water (Swimming Pools and Spas)

In advance of a power outage, it is recommended to have procedures in place to notify guests that the recreational body of water will be temporarily closed until the power is restored, and to ensure a DPD Test Kit is readily available to test pool chemistry.

In the event of power outage, swimming pools and spas are to voluntarily close due to lack of recirculation, filtration and disinfection of pool water.

• During a power outage:

1. Post easily visible signage indicating the temporary closure for all guests to see.  

2. Notify guests to discontinue use of the swimming pool or spa. 

3. Restrict access to the recreational water body.

• Prior to reopening and resuming use of recreational bodies of water:

1. Check and ensure that the water chemistry is returned to required levels.

​2. Ensure electricity and gas services have been restored and circuit breakers have been properly reset.

3. Ensure all equipment in the facility is working properly, including motors/pumps, filters, and chlorinators.​

Informational Links

​PG&E re​ported electrical outage page​​

 

If you have any questions or concerns about what to do during a power outage, please contact us at [email protected] or call (408) 918-3400.​

 

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