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Santa Clara County braces for power outage, poor air quality

Official seal of Santa Clara County, Calif.

As PG&E prepares for another Public Safety Power Shutoff throughout the state, the Santa Clara County Public Health Department is urging county residents to prepare for possible poor air quality this weekend.

Sara Cody, director of the county’s Public Health Department, said during a news conference Friday:

“The air quality is great right now.”

“The main message is we want people to plan ahead. We don’t want to wait until we’re all uncomfortable.”

As the Kincade Fire grew to 21,900 acres in Sonoma County, Cody warned of a possible wind change on Saturday that could bring heavy smoke and poorer air quality to the South Bay this weekend.

She encouraged residents to “think about friends and family that are vulnerable,” who, for example, may lose power to ventilators and respirators following a power shutoff at their home.

Cody urged those with such devices to prepare backup power for their devices, should a shutoff hit their area.

As of Friday morning, containment of the Kincade Fire was at 5 percent, according to Cal Fire.

Cody added:

“Some people who are really vulnerable may want to move.”

“It may not be great for them to stay in a home that’s smoky with no power.”

PG&E anticipates the shutoffs could last from Saturday night through Monday morning.

A list of affected areas and counties will be updated throughout the weekend on PG&E’s website.

Governor declares State of Emergency for Sonoma, Los Angeles counties

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