SoCal Edison Has Had 25 Outages in WeHo This Year, with 16 Not Planned For

power outage

The power outage in West Hollywood on April 20 was unquestionably a big one and a long one, according to data provided to WEHOville by Southern California Edison.

The data supplements and clarifies information provided by SCE shortly after the April 20 outage. According to SCE, the outage began at 7:17 a.m. on that Saturday morning, and Sin its early stages it affected about 9,800 customers.  “It was caused by an equipment issue and then the need to replace a cable near Santa Monica Boulevard and Hancock Avenue,” said SCE. “Most of the customers were restored that morning at 8:25 a.m.”  However 331 customers went without power for a little more than 24 hours, with their electricity back on at 10:41 a.m. on Sunday, April 21.

SCE reports that there have been a total of 16 unplanned or repair outages in West Hollywood so far this year and nine other scheduled outages for maintenance such as transformer and pole replacements and upgrading existing equipment. 

“Most of those were of short duration and resulted from a range of causes including equipment issues, vegetation causes, and weather issue,” said SCE of the unplanned outages. “They were frequently localized and impacted less than 100 customers.”

However, three of the 16 outages had a bigger impact. In addition to the one on April 20, there was one of short duration on Jan. 31 because of rain and lightning in the area.  It affected approximately 3,600 customers.  There also was one on Feb. 20 that lasted three hours.  If affected about 3,700 customers.

The nine planned maintenance outages usually affected less than 100 customers and customers received advanced notice of the work.

“These outages are needed to ensure we can maintain the system, improve the functioning of the grid, and help where possible to reduce the number of emergency outages that could be of longer duration and occur without notice to customers,” said Robert Laffoon-Villegas, a spokesman for SCE.

Laffoon-Villegas said that SCE hopes to have its annual reliability report for 2018 ready by late May.

West Hollywood is served by 23 circuits and is part of SCE’s Santa Monica District.  SCE uses two measures of the reliability of its electric circuits.  The System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) measures the amount of time the average SCE customer experienced a power outage or interruption for more than five minutes (called a “sustained outage”) in a given year.  The System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI) is the number of times the average SCE customer experienced a sustained outage in a given year. Then there is the MAIFI measure, which is the amount of the number of times the average customer is interrupted by  “momentary ” (lasting 5 minutes or less) outages each year.

SCE’s Santa Monica District, which includes Beverly Hills, Culver City, Franklin Canyon, Ladera Heights, Los Angeles, Marina Del Rey, Santa Monica and Universal City as well as West Hollywood, had a good 2017 ranking.  Among the 35 SCE districts in Southern California, it ranked No. 33 on SAIDI index, meaning that 32 other cities had more outages of five minutes or more.  It ranked No. 30 on the SAIFI index, which means that customers in 29 other cities experienced more sustained outages in 2017 than did those in West Hollywood.

In 2017, West Hollywood customers experienced an average of 70.3 minutes of sustained interruptions over the course of the year.  That compares with an average of 139.7 minutes for all of SCE’s customers. 


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carleton croninc
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All this simply (at least for simple me) indicates that our infrastructure, and especially electric utilities, are facing the problem of aging equipment, reliance on contractors for maintenance, increase in solar roof installations and the push and pull of growth in the areas they service. I see all utilities struggling to keep up with change and I see the need for an uncommon and unprecedented mutual response by electric, water and gas providers to meet a common challennge.

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Essentials

You are right but this needs to be inspired by the City of West Hollywood. These are not the sexy, bright and shiny elements but the most essential to everyone’s life. More attention needed to this and less to the fluff.