Public Safety Power Shutoff Program

Hawaiian Electric News Release

With the dry summer months ahead, Hawaiian Electric is expanding its wildfire safety strategy by launching a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) program. Starting July 1, Hawaiian Electric may preemptively shut off power in areas that appear at high risk of wildfire during periods of forecast high winds and dry conditions to help reduce the risk of wildfires.
For Molokai, approximately 1,300 residents in Kaunakakai and Kualapuu would be potentially impacted by the PSPS.
This program is our last line of defense to keep communities safe and may result in extended power outages. The program will start in areas that Hawaiian Electric has determined present higher wildfire risk factors. In the future, Hawaiian Electric intends to expand the program to cover all high-risk areas served by Hawaiian Electric.
This program is just one component of Hawaiian Electric’s three-phase wildfire safety strategy.
A PSPS will only be activated in an area if weather data indicate conditions for heightened wildfire risk. These conditions may include strong winds, low humidity and dry vegetation. Combined, these factors can result in downed trees or flying debris contacting power lines and damaging electrical infrastructure, which can create the risk of wildfires.
Before activating a PSPS, Hawaiian Electric will notify the public and coordinate with government officials, first responders and emergency response agencies. Hawaiian Electric will provide public notifications through news releases, social media, online outage maps and updates to its website. If weather conditions change suddenly, shutoff may occur with little or no notice.
During a PSPS activation, power will remain shut off so long as hazardous weather conditions persist. When the weather improves, power lines must be inspected and any damage must be repaired before service can be restored. This may involve ground crews and aerial inspections using helicopters and drones. This process may result in extended outages lasting several hours, possibly even days depending on the location and extent of any damage.
Shutting off power, even to reduce wildfire risks, has broad impacts across the community. Hawaiian Electric has coordinated with stakeholders from across government and the private sector, including emergency response agencies, government officials, essential service providers and businesses, to ensure public awareness and safety during a PSPS activation.
Customers on life support with special medical needs are urged to prepare now for the possibility of extended power outages. Hawaiian Electric asks those customers to provide their contact information to receive future notifications in advance of a PSPS by submitting an online Medical Needs Communications Form at hawaiianelectric.com/PSPS.
For more information and maps, call Hawaiian Electric’s PSPS hotline at 1-844-483-8666 toll-free or go to hawaiianelectric.com/PSPS.


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