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PG&E Summer Safety Tips Help Customers Enjoy a Happy and Healthy Outdoor Season

06/19/2015

Utility Reminds Customers to Have a Plan to Avoid Electric, Gas and Wildfire Hazards While Working or Playing Outdoors

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- The start of summer is just a few days away and Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) urges customers to avoid risks related to severe drought conditions and certain outdoor activities. Whether you’re at work or play, careful planning and preparation is needed to prevent electric and gas hazards, wildfires, heat-related illness and other dangers.

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California is in the middle of one of the worst droughts on record and tinder dry conditions make summer safety an important priority. PG&E continually monitors weather and fuel conditions to mitigate and prepare for the risk of wildfires, and we work closely with public safety organizations to assist in fire response activities.

PG&E offers the following safety tips to help customers enjoy a happy and healthy summer season.

  • “Call 811 Before You Dig!” when planning outdoor projects that require any type of excavation, large or small, to ensure you know where gas and electric lines are buried underground
  • “Look Up and Live!” and remember these safety tips for overhead power lines:

    • Enjoy fireworks, kites, high powered water guns and remote control aircraft away from overhead electric lines to avoid the potential for power outages, fires and serious injuries
    • Celebrate with helium filled metallic balloons by making sure they are tied to a weight heavy enough to prevent them from floating into power lines
    • If a balloon or toy is caught in a power line, contact PG&E immediately at 1-800-743-5000 to report the problem. Never attempt to retrieve anything that is on or near a power line
    • When working around the house this summer, look up before lifting ladders and other long-handled tools to avoid accidental contact with electric lines
    • Never climb or trim trees that are growing into or near a power line. Contact PG&E at 1-800-743-5000 to report tree limbs near power lines. The utility will dispatch a tree-trimming crew qualified to work around high-voltage
    • Never go near a damaged power line that has fallen to the ground or is dangling in the air. Always assumed downed electric lines are energized and extremely dangerous. Stay away, keep others away and immediately call 911 and PG&E
  • Follow these wildfire safety tips; especially during excessively dry and windy conditions:

    • Use spark arrestors for mowers, chainsaws, tractors and other portable gas powered equipment
    • Make sure towing chains are not throwing sparks while driving
    • Completely extinguish open campfires and keep a bucket of water and a shovel nearby
    • Create and maintain a defensible space around your property to help slow or stop a wildfire
  • Practice these hot weather safety tips when temperatures are unusually high:

    • Visit PG&E-supported Cooling Centers to escape the heat. For information on Cooling Centers, or to find out if there is one in your neighborhood, contact your local city or county
    • If your neighborhood does not have a Cooling Center, plan trips to public places with air conditioning such as libraries, movie theaters or shopping malls
    • Avoid strenuous activities in hot, direct sunlight
    • Drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol or caffeine when the weather is hot
    • Pay attention to your body. Muscle cramps, dizziness and nausea may be signs of a heat-related illness

About PG&E

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit www.pge.com/ and www.pge.com/en/about/newsroom/index.page.

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Source: Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Brian Swanson, 415-973-5930

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