Feds: Utilities May Face $1M-A-Day Fines For SoCal Power Outage

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Federal officials on Friday began their investigation of California state utility practices in the wake of a disruption that left millions without power.

KNX 1070’s Pete Demetriou reports investigators may have found the source of the outage, but there still remains more questions than answers.

The outage reportedly occurred when a 500 KV line went offline after a worker in a Southwest Arizona substation removed a piece of monitoring equipment.

Officials from several utilities along with the North American Electric Reliability Corporation are trying to find out what caused a cascade effect which turned out the lights until early Friday morning.

There could be an even more urgent hunt for answers now that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is involved in the investigation.

If regulatory violations are found, fines of up to $1 million a day per violation can be leveled against the utilities, according to spokeswoman Mary O’ Driscoll.


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