Helicopter

A helicopter operated by a PG&E subcontractor flies near the St. Helena Public Cemetery on Monday. The subcontractor leased land from the cemetery to use as a base of operations during work on PG&E's transmission towers.

St. Helena was bracing for another PG&E power shutoff starting at 3 p.m. Wednesday.

PG&E’s goal is restore power to the vast majority of customers within 48 hours after the weather has passed.

While not as widespread as the outage that started Oct. 9, St. Helena officials were preparing for part of the city to lose power.

PG&E confirmed Wednesday morning that it would initiate a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) due to the possibility of dry winds and possible fire danger. To learn whether a specific address will be affected, visit psps.ss.pge.com.

Mayor Geoff Ellsworth urged residents to keep two or three days of non-perishable food and water on hand. He said police and fire services will be on high alert.

St. Helena officials also ask customers to conserve water so as not to overtax the generators that power the city’s water pumps during an outage.

Public Works Director Erica Ahmann Smithies said PG&E is looking for a suitable site in St. Helena for a generator-powered Community Resource Center. In other communities, those centers have offered water, charging stations, air-conditioned seating and restrooms.

During an outage, people can go to City Hall for information and to charge their phones.

The St. Helena Unified School District planned to go ahead with classes and after-school activities on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, although power outages are possible at St. Helena Elementary School and RLS Middle School. The primary and high schools are not expected to lose power.

Morning and afternoon transportation will be provided, and the Boys & Girls Club will maintain normal business hours. The St. Helena High School Homecoming Parade is still scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25.

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