Incident Investigations for Electric and Communication Facilities

Electric utilities must report electric incidents (accidents involving electric facilities), which meet any of the criteria below:

  • A fatality or injury involving electric facilities.
  • Damage to property of the utility or others in excess of $50,000.
  • Significant media coverage.
  • A major outage to at least 10% of the utilities entire service territory is experienced at a single point in time.

In general, the electric utility must report these types of incidents to the CPUC within two (2) hours of their occurrence. ESRB investigates these incidents to enforce the CPUC’s rules and regulations and to determine how we can limit the occurrences of such incidents in the future.   ESRB produces an investigative report for each incident reported and investigated.

To request a copy of a report, please contact our Legal Division with a specific and focused request so that the records can be identified, located and retrieved our staff:

CPUC Legal Division Public Records Office
505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco, CA 94102
Fax: (415) 703-2262

Phone: 415-703-1366

public.records@cpuc.ca.gov  

For more details about the reporting requirements, please see the excerpt from Appendix B to D.06-04-055 and CPUC Resolution E-4184.

ESRB Investigations

Larkin Substation Outage - On April 21, 2017, an equipment failure at Larkin Substation resulted in a fire and outage to the northern part of San Francisco, California. Larkin Substation is owned by Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E). The CPUC is currently investigating the root cause of the incident. [Download the Outage Investigation Report by PG&E's consultant Exponent] 

Historical Incident Statistics

Note: The data below was collected from our database through December 2017.

Total Number of Reported Incidents

The table below shows the total number of reported incidents by each utility per year.

 

Reported Incidents by Utility
Utility 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Total
Communication Infrastructure Provider 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 2
Bear Valley Electric 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 3 3 2 2 13
Kirkwood Meadows Public Utilities (formerly Mountain Utilities)  0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2
Pacific Gas & Electric 83 44 49 57 77 103 115 82 50 33 79 772
PacifiCorp (Pacific Power) 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 4 0 1 1 9
Souther California Edison 27 27 39 25 36 49 50 74 52 52 41 472
San Diego Gas & Electric 26 14 6 7 11 15 38 15 18 21 8 179
Liberty Utilities 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 4
Los Angeles Department of Water and Power 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Transbay Cable 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 2
Yearly Total 136 87 95 92 124 167 206 182 123 110 134

1456


 

 Total Number of Fatalities per Utility

The table below shows the number of fatalities that resulted from reported incidents for each utility.

 

Injuries per Utility
Utility 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Total
Communication Infrastructure Provider 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1
Pacific Gas & Electric 5 6 4 7 4 4 6 4 9 6 5 60
PacifiCorp (Pacific Power) 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 2
Souther California Edison 5 3 3 4 8 7 6 11 5 7 3 62
San Diego Gas & Electric 4 2 1 0 0 3 2 1 1 1 0 15
Yearly Total 14 11 8 11 12 14 14 18 15 14 9 140

 

Total Number of Injuries per Utility

The table below shows the total number of injuries that resulted from reported incidents for each utility.

 

Injuries per Utility
Utility 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Total
Communication Infrastructure Provider 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1
Pacific Gas & Electric 9 12 9 6 11 12 11 14 15 6 10 115
PacifiCorp (Pacific Power) 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2
Souther California Edison 12 15 20 16 16 18 16 24 19 12 13 181
San Diego Gas & Electric 5 4 2 0 3 5 3 3 2 3 1 31
Yearly Total 26 32 31 22 30 35 31 42 36 21 24 330

 

 Total Number of Utility Incidents by Cause

The table below shows the total  number of reported incidents sorted by cause for each utility.

 

Incidents by Cause
Cause 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Total
Equipment/Line Failure 35 18 36 28 55 49 76 52 26 29 33 437
Vehicle 14 6 9 8 10 17 19 15 7 14 10 129
Utility Work 22 24 23 19 27 31 39 41 34 16 17 293
Vegetation 11 11 7 9 8 10 15 16 13 11 25 136
Natural Cause 9 3 2 6 10 18 19 19 11 11 8 116
Excavation 12 8 2 4 2 11 3 3 7 3 2 57
Other 33 17 16 18 12 31 35 36 25 26 39 288
Yearly Total 136 87 95 92 124 167 206 182 123 110 134 1456

 


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