EL DORADO COUNTY, Calif. —
Pacific Gas and Electric Company says that, as of Wednesday night, more than 48,000 customers are still without power following the recent massive snowfall in the Sierra.
Customers across Northern California got either a phone call or text from PG&E, stating that crews are expected onsite by Monday, Jan. 10 at 2 p.m. – which is about a week and a half away. Advertisement
Sharon and Edd Donald are two of those customers. They live in El Dorado County, near Sly Park Road, and are currently using lamps and candles to try and brighten up their home.
"Let there be light, battery light!" exclaimed Edd Donald, while switching on a lamp he fastened to the ceiling of his kitchen.
Although they have a generator, not everything in their home is working – and they need more fuel to keep what little light they have on.
"The main propane tank is just about down to 20%," Edd said.
They have been without power since Monday, which is not entirely unusual.
"We have power outages a lot, but it usually comes back on in two, three, four days at the most," Sharon said.
But this time, they got a phone call saying PG&E would come out to their home by Jan. 10. Now, they feel left in the dark – in more ways than one.
"There doesn't seem to be empathy for people who don’t have what they need," Sharon said.
KCRA 3 asked PG&E specifically about the Jan. 10 date. They did not directly address it, but instead sent KCRA 3 this statement:
"Given the historic snowfall and unprecedented damage and access issues, PG&E has been sending initial estimated times of restoration to impacted customers to help them plan and prepare for the next week. These dates are based on initial assessments and the dates will likely change as we gain access, survey damage and continue the restoration progress. We have scores of crews working along side other first responders and we will not stop until every customer is restored from the powerful holiday winter storm."
While PG&E maintains access to homes is an issue, Sharon and Edd say the roads in the area of their home are plenty accessible.
"It just doesn’t seem right that they can’t get a crew out before Jan. 10," Sharon said.
The Donalds are not alone. Nancy Ryon is staying at a hotel in Folsom, while she waits for the power to be restored to her Pollock Pines home.
"It’s extremely frustrating," Ryon said.
Ryon says there is no reason PG&E should be taking this long.
"If they don’t have the crew to come out and address this sooner, then they need to contract with third parties or do whatever they can to bring as many forces in as possible to get this work completed in a timely fashion," Ryon said.
While the Donalds try to stay warm, they have one main question:
"Where's the accountability?" asked Edd.