SF apartment residents recap ordeal with days-long power outage following underground fire

Tara Campbell Image
Sunday, April 30, 2023
SF apartment residents recap ordeal with days-long power outage
Residents of the high-rise apartment complex and townhomes in San Francisco describe the impact of having no power for several days.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Frustrations are still running high for some San Francisco residents waiting days for PG&E to get their power back on.

A vault fire knocked out electricity on Wednesday night and at one complex they are still relying on a generator.

Flames were flying up from underground Wednesday and Saturday frustrations are still running high.

"I'd like to see PG&E communicate more openly with us and give us a better idea of when things are going to go back to normal," said resident Andrew Reilly.

MORE: SF business says they will lose $50,000+ due to power outage caused by underground fire

San Francisco's Barbarossa Lounge says they will lose more than $50,000 due to a power outage caused by an underground fire.

Reilly says he feels for some of the seniors living here.

"There are quite a few of them that have less mobility that maybe don't have the means to go eat out or whatever and the loss of resources for them is significant, especially the time they were without elevators," he said.

David Burnett has lived in the complex for 40 years.

"PG&E has just evidently dropped the ball," he said.

The 83-year-old has been climbing four flights of stairs amidst the outage.

MORE: Is there any way to get repaid for food lost during a power outage?

PG&E first said it would have power restored here just after midnight Wednesday. But one update after the next kept coming, pushing the timeframe back.

Tara Campbell: "When you got that email today saying 'now Monday,' what was your thought?"

David Burnett: "I couldn't believe it. I regret not leaving the city when I thought about doing it Friday because I could have made a plan and avoided a lot of this."

In an email Saturday evening a PG&E spokesperson said crews have completed repairs and restored power to customers impacted by Wednesday's equipment damage.

But it is now investigating a new outage at the Gateway location, leaving these generators to keep pumping out the power.

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