Solano County residents endure PG&E power shutoff 1 year after devastating LNU Complex wildfire

SOLANO COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- Monday's Public Safety Power Shutoff was much more limited than originally expected, according to PG&E, due to favorable weather conditions.

As of this afternoon, about 5,200 customers were impacted in ten counties.

In Solano County, that number was just 100, but many of them were in the same neighborhoods severely damaged by last year's devastating wildfires.

For Ben Upton and his wife Martha, having to go without power for a few hours, maybe even a few days, is just the latest challenge.

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"It went off at 6 a.m. this morning," said Ben Upton. "And they said it would be back on in a couple hours, but then they have to check the lines, so it may not be till tonight."

The Uptons live in a rural part of eastern Solano County where the homes meet the hills, with lots of open space in between.

A place where they and dozens of others lost their homes last year in fires with names like "LNU Complex" and "Hennessey."

"The fires come down the valley and came over the hill and we just had time to get out with our two cars and one motorcycle and we lost everything," said Upton.

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Now there's a trailer where the Uptons once had a house, and thanks to PG&E's Public Safety Power Shutoff, not far from the trailer, sits a generator.

Just down the road from the Uptons, a crew has cleared away a big tree too close to power lines.

And the late September wind that whips through the dry trees and brush is a continual reminder that living out here -- with all its allure -- also means living with a certain amount of danger.

Given what he's been through, Ben Upton doesn't mind the inconvenience of a power shutoff.

"I think it's a good precaution," he said. "It seems like a lot of the fires have been started by power lines and the winds blowing, knocking them down with tree limbs. I'm okay with it."

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