Rising temperatures prompt California Flex Alert

FILE PHOTO: Power lines are silhouetted as the sunsets over Santa Clarita on Oct. 20, 2016. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

With temperatures reaching triple digits Tuesday and Wednesday, the California Independence System Operation (ISO) issued a statewide Flex Alert, encouraging residents conserve electricity.

Issued Monday by the state’s power grid manager, the Flex Alert asks California residents to voluntarily conserve electricity from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Consumers are urged to voluntarily conserve electricity to help avoid more serious steps to protect the power grid, including local rotating outages,” a statement from California ISO read.

To conserve electricity during the late afternoon “when air conditioners are typically in peak use,” consumers are asked to turn off all unnecessary lights, not use major appliances between 2 p.m. and 9 p.m. and set their air conditioners to 78 degrees or higher.

The statewide Flex Alert follows Excessive Heat Warnings for the area which are in effect in Los Angeles County until 9 p.m. Wednesday and in Antelope Valley until 9 p.m. Thursday.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, temperatures are expected to rise to more than 100 degrees in the Santa Clarita Valley, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

“The very high temperatures could create a dangerous situation in which heat related illnesses are possible.  Temperatures inside vehicles, even if the windows are partially open, can quickly rise to life-threatening levels,” a statement from NWS read.  “The extended heat wave will also bring elevated fire danger.”

To stay cool in the valley, residents are encouraged to visit the city’s cooling centers during the day, drink plenty of fluids and stay out of the sun.

Conservation tips

  • Set thermostat at 78° or higher and turn off, if away
  • Cool with fans and draw drapes
  • Turn off unnecessary lights and appliances
  • Use major appliances in morning or late evening

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