December 7, 2013

EmergencyElectrical Inspections to Reconnect Wind Machines in Tulare County

Tulare County Farm Bureau has announced that growers who need to obtain an emergency inspection and permit to reconnect power to wind machines or other engines will have quicker access to getting power restored.

The issue was brought to the attention of Farm Bureau earlier this year that growers who rely on Southern California Edison for power to their wind machines may have to wait days on end for a hook up to be made if an engine loses power during a critical weather event or over a holiday period.

The Agricultural Advisory Committee directed county staff to look into the situation and model a solution after policies that are already in place with PG&E.

Growers will be able to contact the Countys new hotline at 877-770-2960 (for SCE outages only) on an as needed basis to request assistance. PG&E customers will continue calling a different hotline number at 800-743-5000.

County building inspectors will be on call to provide an emergency inspection when required and will be able to authorize a temporary permit to allow the utility to reconnect service. The minimum charge for an emergency inspection call will be $204 (3 hour minimum at $68.00 per hour), plus the cost of the permit and service restoration fees based on amps.  

Growers will still need to contact the County Building Division of RMA and pay for the Electrical Building Permit within two business days of the reconnect and finalize the permit fees and paperwork. A similar process already exists for PG&E customers, and now SCE customers can expect a similar response for outages that impact agriculture.

Growers are reminded that building inspectors will volunteer for on call duty, and will require 30 minutes to approximately 2 hours for response time. 

A grower should be prepared to leave a message on the new SCE County Hotline number with their name, phone number, and location of the problem. The inspector will call them back and arrange for an agreed upon meeting place to locate the equipment in need of repair. The grower will need to arrange to transport the inspector to the actual site if conditions are inclement. For more information, contact the RMA Building Division at 559-624-7000.

Tulare Farm Bureau wants to extend their thanks to the County and to Dennis Lehman for making this new response service possible.

Emergency Inspections:

Southern California Edison (SCE)                1-877-770-2960

Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E)                  1-800-743-5000

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