Dear Neighbor,

By now, many of you may be aware of the PG&E planned power shutoff due to high wildfire risk conditions of extremely strong winds and low humidity . This forecast is similar to the conditions we saw in 2017 when the deadly North Bay Fires occurred.

The latest report from PG&E is that the planned power shutoff will begin at noon TOMORROW, Wed., Oct. 9, impacting PG&E customers in the Berkeley hills. If you are in the power shutoff zone (see the map below) and believe you would have trouble evacuating in an emergency, please make plans to leave as soon as possible.

Many communication platforms may not function in areas without electricity. Those who choose to stay in the power shutoff zone should make plans for food and water for up to six days. Power is expected to remain off for at least 36 hours and potentially up to six days.

Please click HERE to sign up for PG&E's updates and to look up whether your home or business is affected by the planned power shutoff. Please note that the PG&E website is experiencing heavy traffic, resulting in frequent website crashes and limited accessibility. You can also sign up for PG&E's zip-code-specific text message alerts by texting "ENROLL" to 97633.

In addition, please click HERE to sign up for emergency alert messages from Alameda County. Regardless of whether you're in the power shutoff zone, all Berkeley residents should prepare a go-bag in the event of an imminent wildfire. Please visit the City's wildfire evacuation page for more information .

If you live in the planned power shutoff zone and you have accessibility needs or you use life-sustaining medical equipment that is compromised during an outage, please plan to evacuate and please also call 311 or (510) 981-2489 so the City can get your information.

When electricity is out, neighbors should check on neighbors . There are several fire safety measures that are critical for those without electricity:
  • Don't burn anything, including candles.
  • If you have a generator, know how to use it safely.
  • Don't idle your car in the hills.
  • Don't use any heat producing tools or machines, such as lawn mowers.

Even if your power isn't shut off at first, electricity may be turned off later on Wed., Oct. 9. PG&E has informed Alameda County agencies that they will turn off electricity in phases.

If you see/experience any of the following, consider evacuating on your own:
  • Visible fire in an adjacent home, and/or
  • Visible fire in a home close by with strong winds, and/or
  • Strong winds carrying smoke and/or embers through or over your neighborhood.

If you feel threatened, leave immediately. Do not wait for an evacuation order.
Berkeley residents may also call 311 or (510) 981-2489 to report any dangerous conditions.

Affected areas may be without power for up to six days after the event, and may not have access to wireless service during this time. After the dry windy weather has passed and it is safe to do so, PG&E crews will inspect and restore full power.
If your devices are not working, you will be able to get information and charge them at all Berkeley Public Library branches. The Library will also provide 24-hour wi-fi access during this outage:
  • North Berkeley Library, 1170 The Alameda
  • Central Library, 2090 Kittredge St.
  • South Berkeley Library, 1901 Russell St.
  • Claremont Library, 2940 Benvenue Ave.
  • West Branch Library, 1125 University Ave.

PG&E is monitoring weather conditions and will provide rolling updates as the situation develops. Please click HERE for updates from the City of Berkeley.

Here is additional information about school closures and transportation impacts:
  • BUSD has announced all schools, including those in the power shutoff zone, are expected to be open on Wed., Oct. 9. UC Berkeley has canceled classes on Wed., Oct. 9. They were informed that the transmission lines that power the core campus area will be turned off. Residence Halls are not expected to lose power.
  • Caltrans has announced it may close the Caldecott tunnel as it cannot be open without power, although work is being done overnight to try to keep it open. BART will not be impacted and will continue normal operations.

Stay Safe!