"When The Lights Go Out"

Discussion in 'General Community Discussions' started by BankShot, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. BankShot

    BankShot
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    Not a whole heckalot of new posts on the forum lately but the increase in membership has sure been huge judging from then numbers I've noted over the past couple of months. So with that said I thought I'd ramble off a few lines and let everyone know what us central and northern Californians have been thru recently. Our electric power utility decided it was in the best interest of approx.3/4ths of a million residences, to shut off the power to 33 counties which in turn basically sent us all back to 1820 in one pull of the big switch. No a single business in our little village community was open including our market or bank. Now of course this doesn't fall into the same league as losing your home and belongings to a major fire, hurricane, tornado or some other huge natural disaster but it sure does give you a hard dose of reality as to how fortunate we are to have the things we've grown up with and use in our everyday lives. We don't have a generator and will be getting one after this little incident so as to not have to go thru this past four days as we did. Thankfully being RVers we have our motorhome so we were able to transfer most of the perishables from house fridge and freezer into it and run that fridge on propane. We used the on board generator to fix TV dinners in the microwave and other "delicacies" on the propane cook top that paired well with the countless jugs of wine consumed. So we didn't have it as bad as those that didn't have the ability to do all this. And of course with a 'sigoth' (short for significant other) in recovery from very recent knee replacement surgery, she was unable to make the trek to the RV to eat meals and enjoy the benefits it provided, so I managed to get back into great shape shlepping meals and morning coffee up to the house at least 12,437 trips a day to make sure she was well fed and content to do without electricity and all it provides. The power came on just before noon yesterday and all is well again and we only lost a small amount of perishable frozen items as they didn't all fit into the somewhat smaller fridge in the RV but hey, we did clean the house fridge out so it sparkles again inside and we did get into some great discussions and talks over a few glasses (oops meant to type jugs) of wine by candlelight when night set in and things started going bump in the night. All in all it was quite an adventure and we, or at least I, got to RV without putting a single mile on the odometer. Best mileage we've ever gotten out the "beast"..............

    Hope all you fellow RVers who live, work and play in the areas where "the lights went out" got thru it all in good shape,and took advantage of no TV, no landline robo calls, lots of good communication, and a few extra hours of wonderfully dark and quiet sleep each night due to emptying one too many jugs of that wine........:D

    Yes indeed, BankShot..............(aka Terry)
     
  2. BankShot

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    Forgot to mention that the reason the utility turned off the power was due to "supposed" high gusting winds that may bring down power lines. From the minute the power went off until it came back on days later our community, along with many others affected by the shutdown, barely had the leaves on the trees rustling and most of the time they weren't even moving. Now that makes one really scratch their head and wonder just what the folks running the utility company are storing their grey matter. Certainly can't be in their heads that's for sure............ o_O Even with that thought in mind I still stand by my post above as stated.............. :)

    BankShot...............(aka Terry)
     
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  3. docj

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    Glad to hear that you are Ok after your "19th century experiment!" Having an RV with a generator sure is nice when extended power outages happen. At our last "sticks and bricks" we had an automatic start/transfer propane-fired 15kW generator. It only got used a couple of times, but it sure was nice to have! Welcome back to the 21st Century!
     
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  4. mdcamping

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    Hi Terry, a little late to this thread, wow knee surgery recovery for DW and no power at the house. Good to read both of you took this with a positive attitude! :cool: (maybe the wine helped :p) Glad your all back to civilization!! Hope for a continued recovery and get those wheels rolling again! :cool:

    We have had a couple of times where we were thrown out of civilization, when we bought our present S&B in 2010, first year or so we lost power twice. After that I put in a transfer switch and bought a 8000 watt generac generator. Since then we have never lost power and the only time I run the generator is for routine exercise... go figure

    Mike
     
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  5. BankShot

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    HI Mike and thanks for the well wishes. We will be on the road again asap as we are both chomping at the old bit do so. Just a few months recoup time and off we'll go. The power outage was for sure an inconvenience but we got thru it better than a lot of folks did and with minimal losses of perishable food stuffs. Our local dump put out the word that for four days they would be accepting any and all bags, boxes or cans of spoiled foods at no charge so the small amount we did lose we were able to dispose of quickly and without cost to dump it. All is going along smoothly again and hope it is so with you and your traveling make. Or as I like to call mine, my "Sigoth" as mentioned above. It took several weeks for me to finally tell her what it meant after I nicknamed her with that one. She only hit me twice but did kick me a few times more than that............ :eek:

    All the best to you, Terry
     
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  6. BankShot

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    It's happening again. After just two weeks since our last shutdown, our power company, PG&E, is pulling the big power plug sometime either overnight or early tomorrow morning in 17 No. Calif. counties due to what they are saying will be high winds and low humidity and dangers of fires. Yes that certainly is not a good combination but when they do this it affects areas such as ours where the leaves are barely rustling in the trees. They tell us it's because we are "down line" from a major transmission line that sends power into our area but is located in an area that does have the winds, so consequently we lose power also. At least this time around we have the generators set up and ready to rock and roll and I won't be running back and forth between the house and the RV and using the RV generator to cook meals or having to use the fridge to store the perishables, etc. We can leave everything be, sit back by candlelight and suck the juice from the grape from our gallon plastic jugs, thru our oversized flex straws. It just don't get any much mo betta than that.......:D Be back when the power comes back on..............

    BankShot..............(aka Terry)
     
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  7. Paythebill

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    Wow What a PITA....:mad:
     
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  8. mdcamping

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    That stinks Terry

    Mike
     
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  9. BankShot

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    Mike & Ron - - - Yeah, it is a PITA and yes it really STINKS. But it looks like this will be a way of life for us out here in the "land of fire" anymore. This last shutdown only lasted about 29 hours for us but just as soon as the power came back on late yesterday afternoon it was announced that PG&E is shutting it down again sometime late tonight or early tomorrow so I have left the generator and all hookups in place so all will be fine at this old homestead. A big blaze just got started over in the wine country and has already burned over 16,000 acres and destroyed about 40 homes so far with thousands evacuated. And the news is telling us that it was probably caused by a "broken" transmission tower that was not turned off during this last blackout for some reason. This is really sad because folks are losing their homes and belongings due to a complete and total lack of maintenance by PG&E. At least that's what is being said and communicated in both the media and by people being serviced by PG&E. Here we go again, love the sound of that generator with my evening jug of wine and my morning cup up of what I try to pass off as coffee...........:D

    Terry................(aka BankShot)
     
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  10. mdcamping

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    Terry lack of maintenance was the same culprit back in 2011 for us, why pay workers to keep pretty trees and limbs cleared of power lines? :confused: :mad: This storm was the back breaker that caused us (and probably many others in CT) to put in a transfer switch and generator.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_Halloween_nor'easter

    Mike
     
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  11. BankShot

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    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Unfortunately Mike installing a generator is not the biggest problem in all this. The major problem and concern of many thousands of households in our area is that our homeowner's insurance is under threat of being cancelled and in many cases for those who have already been cancelled, they are facing premium increases by going to companies, that will still write a policy of triple or even quadruple in some areas. And to make maters even worse many homeowners who have their policies cancelled and are unable to find new insurance even at those 30 and 40 percent rate increases, have mortgages on their homes and that require insurance. So what happens then. Do the banks and mortgage companies just step in and foreclose on the mortgage and force people out onto the street? BIG problem happening out here in good old sunny California for sure and one that if not addressed and handled properly very soon is going to create a huge problem, one that will affect millions of people. And all due to negligence on behalf of one major utility company along with the many morons who are careless and leave campfires burning as they leave to go home, or some whacked out idiot who just likes to set fires. Oh, not to mention the countless idiots/morons that toss their lit cigarette/weed butts out the window of their vehicle and into dry grass and bush alongside the highways and roads. It's one big vicious circle that won't go away unless the state, county, and all local officials and residents get their acts together and start implementing make sense changes that will help to alleviate all these ongoing wildfires. Will it happen? Most likely not unless "someone" can make a big bunch of bucks off of it...................:mad: I be one pretty pissed off RVer right about now but at the same time am trying to remain as positive as possible under the conditions that exist where I and many others on this forum work, live and play................

    Terry............(aka BankShot)
     
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  12. newkcmoedoe

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    You left off a big piece of the puzzle, the fact that California environmental regulations virtually prohibit the power company from effectively managing combustibles near the power lines. Add to that the fact that those same regulations prevent forest management and you get a recipe for huge fires.
    For years there have been countless public service pushes for people to create defensible perimeters around their homes and to build with fire resistant materials, yet you still see cedar roofs, wood sided buildings, trees and shrubbery overgrowing structures and homes built in the most fire exposed locations. The only people not to blame are the insurance companies, I wouldn't want the risk either.
     
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  13. BankShot

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    newkcmoedoe - What you say is correct. Many homeowners that live in fire prone areas pay no attention to clearing a safety zone around their homes and property, etc. Those are the ones that should be getting cancellation notices. Some insurance companies are just making blanket cancellations of all policies in a given zip code no matter whether the home is sitting out in the middle of a cleared and manicured 20 acre field or surrounded and enclosed over by hundreds of Pine and old Oak trees and assorted dried out bushes such as Manzanita that are right up against the house and/or hanging directly over it. Why should the homeowner who has gone above and beyond to make his home fireproof pay the price for the fool who hasn't, and even more so, doesn't give a crap about the fire dangers, etc. We have a serious problem out here in California and until the CPUC and/or our governor steps up to the plate and implements positive changes that will stop all these problems being created in large by basically one large utility company, the problem will just get worse. And yes, why would an insurance company want to insure a home that refuses to implement changes to make their home safer in the event of a fire. I agree, I wouldn't want to insure that homeowner either...........

    Regards, BankShot..............(aka Terry)
     
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  14. BankShot

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    Well it's been two days since our power was once again restored and the generator is getting a much needed rest. We've been told we will continue to have power for the next 4 to 5 days, perhaps a day or two more. but it will go off again as soon as the winds kick up. Been an exciting few weeks for us RVers out here in No. Calif. and these rolling power shutdowns have affected many small businesses, a few who have been forced to close their doors and may not be able to reopen them again due to lost revenues. We are hanging in there and looking forward to getting back out on the road again asap, whenever that is. The really bad thing is that during these power shutdowns and along with the huge fires burning in the state, homes are being looted and vandalized by those who have no care or concern for others who are suffering and/or losing everything they own. So help me if somebody tries to break into our humble abode or RV during these down times, I'm going to shoot the SOBs who try and take my chances in a court of law. Yeah I know, one thing to say it and another to actually pull the trigger but boy it pisses me off to know this kind of thing is going on. Okay, best I end this on that note and get back to making sure the generator will still be generating when the power goes out again........................ :rolleyes:

    Regards to all, BankShot...............(aka Terry)
     
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  15. NYDutch

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    It's nowhere near what you folks are experiencing in CA, but we're getting a little taste of it here in the northeast right now. A windstorm took out much of the power in the area Thursday night, and we still don't have it back. The power company is estimating 11:00 PM tonight to be back up for our outage. We're fine sitting here in our motorhome with the generator running and all our usual amenities, but most are not so lucky. Temps got down to freezing last night, so I'm sure there were a lot of folks that spent the night bundled up.
     
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  16. BankShot

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    Hi Dutch - - - We've been watching the national weather and have seen what's going on in your neck of the old woods and no doubt there are a lot of folks there that are out of power and having to keep warm as best they can. Nice that you have the motorhome to provide some of the comforts that the sticks & bricks isn't currently. We have tried to help a few of the neighbors who don't have generators and are in need of having a cup of hot coffee in the mornings. We live in the No. Calif. Sierra Nevadas' foothills and it's gone down below freezing a few times already during the recent power shutdowns. I am very thankful I still have a wood burning stove that keeps the house warm and cozy. Sure are some crazy weather events going on all across the country and I have to wonder if this old planet is going thru a major climatic change or what? We like to think we know it all but me thinks that old Mother Nature is the only one who knows it all, and she ain't telling us squat right now about it.............o_O

    All the best to you Dutch, Terry.................(aka BankShot)
     
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  17. NYDutch

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    Never forget the old maxim, "Man plans, and Mother Nature says, 'Hold my beer...'" ;)
     
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  18. mdcamping

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    Terry I hope things quiet down soon on the west coast and good to here your okay, when do the winds usually quiet down...east coast guy here so I'm guessing this is a seasonal thing?

    Mike
     
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  19. BankShot

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    Thanks Mike, the winds have stopped and we should be okay from here on as they usually die off once we get into Nov. However with the way the old climate seems to be changing it's become a crap shoot of sorts as to whether they will kick up again. I have the generator at the ready and will leave it that way for another week or so just in case. Hope you are well and settling in for your winter ahead also. Be safe and warm.............

    Best regards, Terry
     
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