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SDG&E Cuts Power Because Of Fire Danger; Businesses Forced To Close

Scott Brown closes the doors at Dons Market after the power was cut there mid...

Photo by Matt Hoffman

Above: Scott Brown closes the doors at Dons Market after the power was cut there midday on Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019.

On Wednesday more than 25,000 SDG&E customers had their power cut as conditions were ripe for a wildfire, and some businesses who lost electricity were forced to close.

Dons Market in Santa Ysabel had its power shut off last week. They were hoping it wouldn’t happen again. Owner Scott Brown says he does not have a backup generator and had to throw out thousands of dollars of food then.

"We lost everything that was cold, frozen, a lot of produce, everything. It's probably $30,000 to $40,000 in losses," Brown said.

Then Wednesday afternoon SDG&E pulled the plug on Dons Market again. The utility is estimating the power could be off until Friday evening.

Reported by Matt Hoffman , Video by Andi Dukleth

"Realistically we'll probably lose some stuff but we're hoping that we don't," Brown said.

Dons Market sent all of its employees home and closed its doors after the power was turned off. It put all perishable foods in the freezer and coolers and is hoping it won’t spoil before the lights come back on.

Just down the street, the restaurant Jeremy’s on the Hill was closing because of the loss of power.

"It’s hard for me because my business hat understands why they’re shutting off the power, but my civilian hat gets frustrated," owner Jeremy Manley said. "I can’t be frustrated with SDG&E — I’m frustrated at the circumstance."

Manley does not want to keep closing every time the power is off so he just made the big decision to order a generator.

"We realized that this is now the new normal and we just decided the bite the bullet and we just purchased a $10,000 unit so we can no longer have to be a victim of power outages," Manley said.

Jeremy’s on the Hill was able to save its entire food inventory as its food vendor Sysco lent them one of its refrigerated trailers.

Listen to this story by Matt Hoffman.

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