An estimated 200 residents of Canyon View Estates, living under a hillside coated with solar panels, hunkered down for their second cold dark night without power, bracing themselves for a wet weekend also in the dark.
At least three men and three women complained to The Signal this week about their hardship living without electricity and their frustration in getting property managers to fix the problem.
The residents – who said they were too scared of retaliation by management if they had their names published – expressed disappointment in not receiving a less than satisfactory explanation of the power outage from management.
Efforts to reach Managing Partner Kerry Seidenglanz since Wednesday night were not successful.
On Thursday, when asked about the power outage and repair efforts, a property manager who identified herself as Chris said speaking through a cell phone held by a guard shack employee: “We’re trying to handle this and I don’t have time to talk to you.”
Power first went out for almost half of the 445 residents in Canyon View Estates at shortly after 9 a.m. Wednesday.
Shortly before 2 p.m.Thursday, two workers from an electrical company joined the property’s maintenance man at a bank of transformers, according to four alleged witnesses.
A resident who identified himself as a father said he watched the workers approach the transformer boxes.
“Within 10 minutes I heard this popping and I thought it was gunshots. I thought someone was shooting at him,” he said, referring to the maintenance man.
The resident father said he heard a loud booming sound, then silence.
A woman, a neighbor to the mobile home community, who lives five feet from the transformers on the other side of the fence that separates her from Canyon View Estates, said she was at the window when the transformer appeared to explode.
“I told my son to cover himself,” she said. “It was a very loud explosion. Boy, did they (workers) run. It could have killed them.”
The transformers, according to residents, are part of a hybrid system integrating energy transferred from the hillside solar field.
When asked about the outage, Southern California Edison said they have just one customer – Canyon View Estates – which in turn services at least 445 homes.
The outage was reported by Southern California Edison as a single user.
“We show an outage starting at 5:16 pm today,” Edison spokesman Robert Laffoon-Villegas said Wednesday.
“It shows on our system as one customer – Canyon Country (Canyon Country View Estates).
“That can however be multiple residents, if they are part of a mastered metered community- since the location would only have one meter on the property- they would show on the system as one customer,” Laffoon-Villega said.
“We have no cause determined for the outage and no estimated time of restoration at this point,” he said. “We do have a crew assigned but information is limited at this point.
Laffoon-Villegas identified the area experiencing the outage as bounded by:
- South of Blue Sky Lane
- North of Emerald Creek Dr.
- West of Chadway Street
- East of Canyon View Drive
The “resident father” who, in the company of two other men with homes now without power, pointed to a house up his street.
“An old woman on oxygen had to leave,” he said.
Each of the men said they lost freezers full of food – each with a fridge freezer and a stand alone freezer.
The second of the three men, with gray stubble and gray hair, said he was angry to have lost a “fillet mignon steak, 10 ounces.”
A third man, younger, dressed in light-colored baggy sweats said: “I took off work to get dry ice.”
And, as they each returned to their respective darkened homes, the “resident father” pointed to his driveway, and to a car parked there with the passenger door open.
“That’s my daughter, charging her phone,” he said.
Notice of violation
Four months ago, the solar panels flanking the north side of the Canyon View Estates mobile home park remained on the hillsides nearly two months after the city of Santa Clarita directed owners to remove them.
In July, the city issued a notice of violation for the installment of multiple solar panels in and outside the park for failing to obtain the required permits and not complying with conditions of approval, including a condition that 50 percent of the property remain as open space.
Owners of the property were ordered to remove the panels as a result. The city of Santa Clarita is pursuing litigation to force the removal of the solar panels.
Efforts to reach Managing Partner Kerry Seidenglanz Wednesday night were unsuccessful.