The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning due to Santa Ana wind conditions, and as a precaution, Southern California Edison issued a safety-related power shutoff alert for Wednesday and Thursday. The red flag warning is expected to expire at noon Thursday as winds begin to subside.
As of Thursday afternoon, nearly 155,000 customers in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties are under consideration to have power shut off.
Power has also been shut off for approximately 13,200 customers in those counties as of noon.
The so-called Public Safety Power Shutoffs is designed to reduce the risk of fires caused by electrical equipment when strong winds are forecast. Several large fires in California have been linked to electrical equipment.
W/red flag 🚩warnings issued for portions of #LACounty today through noon on 12/24, the #LACoFD encourages residents living in wildfire prone areas to be prepared.— LACoFD (@LACOFD) December 23, 2020
Now is a good time to be SET-please download the Ready! Set! Go! guide (https://t.co/a7jmASJILz) for safety tips. pic.twitter.com/TcxbpMh3ll
Customers can view a map of current SCE outages at www.sce.com/wildfire/psps, or call 1-800-655-4555.
Customers can also sign up for alerts to let them know if the power will be shut off.
As winds whipped across the region overnight, places like Fontana saw some minor damage from the gusts, including toppled Christmas lawn decorations and a wind-whipped canopy.
The sound of the howling winds also kept residents like Eric Moreno awake.
One resident, Margie Gerber, said her dog also got caught up in the wind.
"Even my dog got trapped. This little baseball net fell on him and I could hear him whimper at night and I went to rescue him. It's crazy here," she said.