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UPDATE: South OC Power Outages Hit More Than 120,000

"Everyone is outside walking around," one customer said. "Hopefully my car doesn't get broken into."

More than 120,000 utility customers lost power late Thursday and early Friday because of a blackout affecting Laguna Niguel and a dozen other communities, San Diego Gas & Electric reported.

The outage began at 11:42 p.m. Thursday, according to a map on SDG&E's website. A total of 122,904 homes and businesses were affected, according to SDG&E.

The utility blamed "a combination of factors (that) caused a problem in the electric system." Most of the affected customers had their power restored by around 2:30 a.m., according to SDG&E's outage map.

The blackout area also included Dana Point, Capistrano Beach, San Clemente, northwest Camp Pendleton, San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch, Coto de Caza, Talega, Ortega, Laguna Hills, south Laguna Beach and Mission Viejo, according to the utility.

A resident of the Promenade Apartments in Mission Viejo told Patch, "Everyone is outside walking around. Hopefully my car doesn't get broken into."

-- City News Service contributed to this report

M July 19, 2013 at 11:48 AM
A few hours? Geez, lake forest was without power AGAIN a few weeks ago from 8:00 a.m. until 6:40 p.m. during the heat wave (planned outage was supposed to be 8-2)
Paul w July 19, 2013 at 12:18 PM
Being a little cynical and one day after an announcement that apparently Mitsubishi was at fault for the San Onofre failure, I personally felt like this outage was planned by the power company (an initial seed planting) in an effort to eventually suck much more money out of us for a new power plant. However, someone reported seeing a large blueish flash which would indicate a transformer failure....so I hope it's the latter, but I know either way, we'll be the ones paying for San Onofre.....again.
Paul Herzbrun July 19, 2013 at 01:35 PM
Can anyone really be surprised by the power failure regardless of the reported cause. It was in the cards as soon as they were allowed to close San Onofre. The power company has already announced the increase in your bill effective September 1. Read it and you'll notice it. Then get alarmed. Too bad they are allowed a monopoly and we cannot shop for another power company. After all, the power lines are in. Whose palm has been greased so we cannot shop for cheaper power? Time we citizens start to speak out.
Katherine V. July 19, 2013 at 01:47 PM
Suspicions are understandable, but the outage was by SDG&E and San Onofre was an Edison plant. Edison didn't have an outage. Also, its Edison rate-payers who will pay for San Onofre. I'd be happy you have SDG&E. Your rates have always been lower. I live in the 1/2 of Coto that has Edison. North Coto's rates are way more than South Coto, which has SDG&E. I don't know who draws these lines and dictates which power company we have to use based on where we live, but it stinks. :(
Lori July 20, 2013 at 12:17 PM
I live in the SDG&E half of Coto and have always believed it to be higher than the North.
Donna Fleming July 21, 2013 at 03:45 PM
California has the highest power rates in the US and the best weather. So Mr. Knight sent an open long letter (published in the Patch), to try to explain that we need to be more frugal in our power usage and that rates will go up 15%. The PUC has the final word on rate increases. So, why is Mr. Knight, CEO of SDG & E writing to all of us about the plight of SDG&E? SDG& E can contract with another power vendor and bring it in from Mexico. They are power rich. Mr. Knight needs to do his job. The easy way out of the San Onofre problem is to just raise rates and tell us to use less power. To make his point the power was shut down for the night. There is no mystery why this happened. Knight wanted to make a point. He has the power. If you think this was a coincidence wake up. Nice to believe in Fairy Tales, but we did not live happily ever after.

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