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Utility urges residents to save energy in heat wave

July 20, 2009 |  1:25 pm

Officials with Southern California Edison asked Southland residents today to conserve energy to help lighten the load on the power grid as a heat wave continues.

About 10,000 households experienced outages – some of them related to the heat – over the weekend, they said.

Outages can result from heavy power usage when customers blast their air conditioning, and the consecutive hot days and nights do not give equipment a chance to cool down, said Vanessa McGrady a spokeswoman for Southern California Edison.

As of this morning, close to 400 homes were out of power, including three in Cathedral City that had been without electricity for more than 24 hours, McGrady said.

Residents can help relieve the load by setting thermostats to 78 degrees or above, using fans instead of air conditioning and running power-intensive appliances, such as dishwashers and washing machines, in the early mornings or evenings.

“Every little bit helps,” McGrady said.

-- Victoria Kim