Thousands of Malibu residents were put on standby by Southern California Edison on Monday, after the circuit that includes the western half of the city was placed on the utility company's "monitoring" map for a possible power cut later this week.
The map, which includes SCE customers from about Big Sycamore Canyon (to the west) to midway through Point Dume and up into Ramirez Canyon (to the east)—known as the Galahad Circuit—could see power cuts from 9 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 8, through 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 9, as part of SCE's "public safety power shut-off" intentional blackout program.
"If your power has been shut off, we will restore power as soon as the weather conditions permit, and crews have inspected the power lines to confirm it is safe to restore power," the utility's webpage stated.
As of 5 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 7, there were reportedly no customers currently on the blackout list; however, nearly 70,000 customers in Kern, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties were being monitored for possible power shut-offs.
The program is designed to cut power lines during high wind events to avoid sparking wind-driven fires—such as the devastating 2018 Woolsey Fire, which was caused by SCE lines. The potential for shut-offs came at the tail end of a historic heatwave in LA County and the monitoring period will come into effect during a National Weather Service issued Red Flag Warning.
The warning was in effect from noon Tuesday to 8 p.m. Wednesday, with a special warning for the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.
“North to northeast winds developing Tuesday afternoon and continuing through Wednesday. The strongest winds are expected Tuesday night and Wednesday morning with gusts between 50 and 60 mph.," an alert from the weather service read. “Relative Humidity...Minimum humidity 5 to 15 percent with poor overnight recovery.”
For more information on SCE's PSPS program, click here.