September 1, 2022
EBMUD deploys equipment to ensure reliable water delivery during Public Safety Power Shutoffs
No effect on water system; portable generators and pumps in place at critical sites for duration of fire season
OAKLAND – The East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) has stationed 38 portable generators and pumps at critical facilities in Alameda and Contra Costa counties to keep water flowing should Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) determine public safety power shutoffs (PSPS) are necessary. PG&E implements these preemptive power outages to prevent its equipment from igniting wildfires during high-fire danger periods.
EBMUD’s emergency equipment will remain in place through the fire season to maintain reliable water service for East Bay communities and emergency responders during any extended electrical outage.
“EBMUD is committed to year-round emergency preparedness to ensure a safe and reliable water supply,” said EBMUD Board President Doug Linney. “For the fourth consecutive year, EBMUD has backup electrical power at the ready to support critical infrastructure during wildfire season. We thank our customers for supporting our efforts by conserving water when the power is out.”
Preparation at EBMUD facilities
Neighborhood pumping plants play an important role in EBMUD’s water distribution system, moving water uphill to tanks for customers to use in more than 120 pressure zones. These pumping plants do not typically have on-site electrical generators, but during fire season EBMUD installs portable generators and pumps. When fire danger is high and Red Flag Warnings are in effect, EBMUD fills neighborhood tanks ahead of time so they are at maximum capacity for customers and firefighters.
EBMUD’s wastewater facilities at the foot of the Bay Bridge also are ready for PSPS. With advance notice of a PSPS event from PG&E, EBMUD can shift electrical loads and prepare onsite generators to ensure safe treatment and discharge of wastewater to protect public health and San Francisco Bay.
Customers asked to minimize water use during power shutoffs
EBMUD does not anticipate water service disruptions during a PSPS event. When a PSPS occurs, EBMUD will notify customers in affected areas to temporarily reduce consumption indoors, and temporarily suspend water use outside, to support our efforts to preserve water supplies for the duration of the event. During a PSPS, visit ebmud.com/psps for a map of affected neighborhoods being asked to conserve.
Please also verify your customer contact information at ebmud.com/my-account for emergencies.
Subscribe to EBMUD alerts
EBMUD has improved emergency communication with customers and the community. Anyone can stay informed by email or text about PSPS events, as well as main breaks and upcoming construction, at any address in EBMUD’s service area that is important to them. You do not need an EBMUD billing account to be notified. Just set up an EBMUD ID, tell us the addresses you care about, and subscribe to receive alerts. Visit ebmud.com/subscriptions.
Keep emergency water at home
EBMUD recommends that all Bay Area residents store backup water in case of earthquakes, storms and other emergencies that could disrupt service. Keep a minimum of one to two gallons per person, per day, for seven days – and don’t forget extra water for pets. To learn more about how to store emergency water visit ebmud.com/waterstorage.
The East Bay Municipal Utility District has a proud history of providing high-quality drinking water for 1.4 million customers in Alameda and Contra Costa counties. EBMUD’s wastewater system serves 740,000 customers and helps protect the ecosystem of San Francisco Bay. EBMUD is a not-for-profit public agency established in 1923.
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