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The Latest: PG&E Cuts Power To About 500K People

Hundreds of thousands of Californians are without power for the second time in two weeks as dangerously windy weather prompts safety shutdowns. Pacific Gas & Electric Wednesday afternoon cut power to about 178,000 customers from the Sierra Foothills to portions of the San Francisco Bay Area. Around a half million people are affected. 748 customers in Tehama County are in the dark, including parts of Manton, Mill Creek, Mineral, and Paynes Creek. In Butte County, nearly 18,000 have lost power. Outages could last 48 hours, depending on a number of factors, including when the gusty wind eases up. Northern winds are expected to taper off Thursday afternoon. The winds have prompted a red flag warning that includes Shasta County, which is not included in the shutoffs. More information is at pgealerts.com. PG&E blacked out about 2 million people just two weeks ago, drawing criticism. The utility says outages were more targeted this time, but more are possible Saturday with dry gusts in the north.