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Flex Alert Declared For SoCal, Where Thousands Already Without Power

LOS ANGELES (CBS/AP) — State power grid officials are urging Southern Californians to conserve electricity Monday amid a fierce heat wave.

The California Independent System Operator has declared a "Flex Alert" for Southern California from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to help avoid power outages, which have already hit thousands of homes.

According to the LADWP, the Harbor Gateway area was hardest hit, with 1,235 customers without power as of Monday morning. In Beverly Grove, 459 customers were without power as well.

In the heart of the San Fernando Valley, where temperatures soared into 110-degree territory and beyond on Sunday, 109 customers were without power in Panorama City and Winnetka, while 23 customers were in the dark in Atwater Village.

SoCal Edison also reported sporadic outages in the Orange County. Orange was hardest hit, with 716 customers without power, followed by 192 in Santa Ana, 135 in Irvine and 122 in Buena Park. Newport Beach, Huntington Beach and Yorba Linda also reported 73, 57 and 29 customers without power, respectively.

Long Beach reportedly had 1,400 homes without power by about 8:15 a.m.

In addition to the strain from use of air conditioners, natural gas supplies that fuel many Los Angeles-area power plants may be tight because of the partial shutdown of the Aliso Canyon gas storage facility after a well blowout that spewed gas for weeks.

Consumers were asked to set air conditioners at 78 degrees or higher, and to avoid using major appliances until after 9 p.m.

The extreme heat also affected public transportation. Metro reported that trains could experience delays throughout the day due to reduced speed caused by the heat. No "slow orders" have been issued, but spokesman Rick Jager said that could change if temperatures "get way up there."

Metrolink service could also see delays, but none have been reported yet. The agency says high heat "makes the rails expand and when they expand the risk of the rail becoming warped increases. Therefore trains slow down as precautionary measures."

(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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