Reliability Standards

The five largest electric utilities annually report industry standard measures of the duration and frequency of outages in order to evaluate performance and identify problem divisions and circuits.

Annual Reliability Reports of the major electric utilities include the following information:

  • Duration and frequency of sustained and momentary outages using SAIDI, SAIFI, and MAIFI, with and without excludable major events for the past 10 years.
  • The top ten power outage events based on customer-minutes, excluding events such as weather, declared emergencies, or disasters affecting over 10% of the utility's customers.
  • Circuits in which customers have experienced greater than twelve sustained outages in a reporting year.

System statistics are computed including transmission, substation, and distribution outages but exclude intentional outages for example for line maintenance. Some of the remaining outages such as storm damage are considered beyond control of the utilities. Statistics are reported both including and excluding the storm outage data.

  • SAIDI (System Average Interruption Duration Index) is the system-wide total number of minutes per year of sustained outage per customer served.
  • SAIFI (System Average Interruption Frequency Index) is how often the system-wide average customer was interrupted in the reporting year.
  • MAIFI (Momentary Average Interruption Frequency Index) is the number of momentary outages per customer system-wide per year.

As used above sustained outages are defined as 5 minutes or longer and momentary outages are less than 5 minutes long.

Utilities must maintain this data for each circuit (a circuit serves roughly 2,000 customers) and make it available to any interested person on request. See Appendix A of D.96-09-045.  The Commission also opened an Electric Reliability Reporting Rulemaking (R.14-12-014) on December 18, 2014, to revise reliability reporting requirements.

After Major Storms Utilities Must Restore Service in Less Than 12 Hours on Average

CAIDI was added to reports of Measured Events (an event affecting between 10% simultaneous and 40% cumulative of all customers). The Commission presumes utility performance is unreasonable when the total minutes of interruption during the event divided by the total interruptions exceeds 570. See D.00-05-022. 

In addition to its annual system-wide report PG&E submits:

An annual division-level report per D.04-10-034 including SAIDI, SAIFI, MAIFI and CAIDI at all 18 division levels; and the same data for any division whenever the data varies by 10 percent or more from the five-year rolling average of reliability performance



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