Los Angeles - Los Angeles City Councilmembers Mitch O’Farrell and David Ryu on Tuesday requested the Department of Water and Power (DWP) and General Manager David Wright to provide a comprehensive report addressing the concerns of tens of thousands of customers who were left without power, many for consecutive days, during some of the hottest days on record earlier this month.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
LA CITY COUNCILMEMBERS O'FARRELL, RYU DIRECT DWP GENERAL MANAGER TO REPORT ON POWER OUTAGES
Power outages on the weekend of July 6 affected nearly 50,000 LADWP customers
CITY HALL - Los Angeles City Councilmembers Mitch O’Farrell and David Ryu on Tuesday requested the Department of Water and Power (DWP) and General Manager David Wright to provide a comprehensive report addressing the concerns of tens of thousands of customers who were left without power, many for consecutive days, during some of the hottest days on record earlier this month.
Through a motion introduced in Council, O’Farrell and Ryu are requesting a full accounting of the circumstances that led to the recent power outages, including: immediate actions taken to address the power outage, and the causes for delay in restoring power; identification of infrastructure upgrades currently underway, the projected timelines for those upgrades, accountability measures in place to ensure for the timely completion of projects, and measures in place to prevent widespread outages in the future; and methods or approaches to make the DWP’s electrical infrastructure climate-change resilient.
“In the 13th District, nearly every neighborhood felt the impacts of the heat and the power outage that left hundreds of constituents without electricity,” Councilmember O’Farrell said. “My office received dozens of complaints via phone calls, emails, and through social media, frustrated over the lack of communication from the department and no accurate time frame as to when customers could expect to have power restored to their homes. I want to know what’s being done to improve the customer experience for our residents.”
The motion also instructs LADWP to report to City Council with ways to improve its sharing of accurate, real-time information with customers, as well as partner agencies and emergency responders. The motion was seconded by Council President Herb Wesson and Councilwoman Nury Martinez, whose committee will hear the report in the coming weeks.
“The heatwave on July 6th may have been the first of its kind, but it won’t be the last,” Councilmember Ryu said. “We need to be prepared. We need an electrical infrastructure that is resilient and a City that is ready to handle a heatwave. Furthermore, LADWP must do better in sharing critical information during an outage. LADWP can’t ask its customers to sit in the dark without giving any estimate of when power will be restored.”
Beginning Friday, July 6th, Angelenos across the city experienced an extreme heat wave that lasted through the weekend. Record-breaking demand resulted in power outages that affected approximately 10,000 customers by 6 p.m. that Friday night. The number of outages grew and peaked at over 46,000 customers affected by 1 a.m, Saturday, July 7, or about three percent of LADWP’s 1.5 million residential customers.
Communication from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power revealed that peak energy demand was the highest ever for a July day and one of the highest on any day in the city’s history.
Read the motion here.
Los Angeles City Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell represents the 13th Council District which includes Atwater Village, East Hollywood, Echo Park, Elysian Valley, Glassell Park, Historic Filipinotown, Hollywood, Little Armenia, Mid-Wilshire/Koreatown, Thai Town and Silver Lake.
Los Angeles City Councilmember David E. Ryu represents the 4th Council District which includes Griffith Park, Sherman Oaks, Toluca Lake, Hollywood, Hollywood Hills, Los Feliz, Silver Lake, Miracle Mile, Hancock Park, Windsor Square, Larchmont and portions of Koreatown and Van Nuys.