Watch CBS News

Tens Of Thousands Powerless As Snow Piles Up In Placer, Nevada Counties

NEVADA CITY (CBS13) — In Nevada and Placer Counties, tens of thousands of Pacific Gas and Electric customers have been left powerless as temperatures drop and more severe weather comes our way.

One local fire district is calling for a local emergency declaration because first responders are having so much trouble getting to calls for service.

The heavy snow coming down is hitting foothill communities with a knockout punch, snapping trees and downing power lines. Snow plows were busy keeping roads clear as Nevada City and Grass Valley streets were left in the dark.

PG&E crews could be seen assessing the damage block by block.

"Just been kind of hunkered down and just been making due with what we got," Nevada City resident Jeff Ward said.

Ward decided to turn his power outage into an opportunity. His home is one of the thousands with no electricity. He decided to barbecue a makeshift meal in the snow.

"It kills two birds with one stone kinda thing you know," Ward said. "You got heat and you got food cookin'."

Christian Got and his family came for a visit from San Francisco. He decided to brave the freezing night, instead of daring to drive home.

"You know I'm sort of a city boy and I'm not too proud to say that if it looks iffy, I usually err on the side of caution," Got said.

The Foresthill Fire Protection District is now requesting Placer County declare a local disaster emergency because of the power outage and downed trees limiting first responder access to homes.

"We're not expecting power back in this community for upwards of a week," Foresthill Fire District spokesperson John Michelini said. "First responders are having a difficulty reaching calls because of the number of trees and power lines that are down."

There is no exact timeline for when PG&E could have power restored to the region.

As of Tuesday morning, despite crews making some progress, PG&E says tens of thousands of customers remain in the dark across several counties. The number without power is El Dorado: 21,000, Nevada: 28,000, Placer: 9,800, Sierra: 1,200, Amador: 8,200, and Calaveras: 9,000.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.