We continue to take action to mitigate the impacts of PSPS events:

Current Guidelines

The current PSPS guidelines (D.20-05-051) direct the electric utilities to more actively and holistically consider the Access and Functional Needs (AFN) community’s needs and input. Such communities include vulnerable populations, current and potentially eligible medical baseline customers. The “Access and functional needs population” are individuals who have the following conditions: 

  • developmental or intellectual disabilities

  • physical disabilities

  • chronic conditions

  • injuries

  • limited English proficiency or who are non-English speaking

  • older adults

  • children

  • people living in institutionalized settings

  • low income

  • homeless

  • transportation disadvantaged, including those who are dependent on public transit

  • pregnant

This is defined by Government Code 8593.3 and is accepted by us and the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. Read more about the AFN actions the electric utilities are directed to take during a PSPS event.

Phase 2 Guidelines

Phase 2 guidelines are a recent action directing the electric companies before, during, and after a PSPS event. These current guidelines ensure the IOUs enhance consistent, customer-friendly communications before and during PSPS events, minimize the impact on customers when electric companies carry out PSPS events, and increase accountability with impacted regional Working Groups and reports.

The current Phase 2 guidelines are preceded by and build upon past actions described below.

  • On April 30, 2020, the CPUC Safety and Enforcement Division (SED) completed a Public Report on the Late 2019 Public Safety Power Shutoff Events (attachments: Part 1, Part 2) that assessed the performance of PG&E, SCE and SDG&E during the late Fall 2019 PSPS events. (SED served its Report in June 2020 to the I.19-11-013 service list, and the Report was incorporated into the record of R.18-12-005 in September 2020.)
    This PSPS caused customer confusion, anger, and resulted in some customers, including medical baseline customers, not being notified of the PSPS. These PSPS events cause us to take many actions.
    On Oct. 18, 2019, we held an Emergency Meeting to hear from top Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) executives to publicly address the mistakes and operational gaps found in the utility’s October 2019 PSPS events and to offer lessons learned to make sure they are not repeated. Learn more information about the meeting and our actions on the October 2019 PSPS Events page.

  • Phase 1 guidelines were approved on May 30, 2019, in a decision in the R.18-12-005 proceeding, to prepare for the 2019 fire season.

  • The CPUC opened a new Rulemaking (R.18-12-005) on December 13, 2018 to examine the utilities' PSPS processes and practices in response to Senate Bill 901.

  • Resolution ESRB-8 was adopted on July 12, 2018 to improve the customer notification requirements before de-energization events and required utilities to submit a report within 10 days after each de-energization event.

  • On April 19, 2012, we provided our first PSPS guidance to utilities in Decision 12-04-024, in response to SDG&E’s Application 08-12-021 requesting specific authority to shut off power as a fire-prevention measure against severe Santa Ana winds and a review of SDG&E's proactive de-energization measures.