Californians without power to reduce wildfire risk

Pacific Gas and Electric said it could take days before all affected customers in Northern California are back to full power.
2:28 | 10/10/19

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Transcript for Californians without power to reduce wildfire risk
and then an unprecedented situation in California. Hundreds of thousands waking up in the dark again this morning. Take a look at thee preventive outages shutting down stores, even traffic lights are going dark. Those outages, brand-new strategy to prevent a major wildfire and will Carr starts us off in San Francisco with the latest. Good morning, will. Reporter: Michael, those diablo winds have picked up overnight. Here at pg&e headquarters they had to set up barriers because they say there is so much frustration over all of this, they're worried about the safety of their employees as a large swath of this region remains without power. Overnight that cloak of darkness expanding across northern California with traffic lights out, cars crashing. In San Jose officials declaring a state of emergency. We took this step to ensure the safety of our customers and our communities as a last resort. This is not a decision we take Reporter: With hundreds of thousands without power, officials say the historic outage could last for days. Many waiting in long lines just to get gas. Pg&e in general should have taken care of this for the last 50 years. If they would have taken care of it, we wouldn't be having it now. I think they jumped the gun. Turning it off is good but wait till it's dangerous. I'm outraged because it didn't need to happen. They're in bankruptcy because of their terrible management going back decades. They've created these conditions. Reporter: After pg&e was found responsible for dozens of wildfires including the deadliest ever last year, the bankrupt utility company decided to proactively shut off the power to try to prevent the next fire. But that's impacted businesses across the region. I cannot put the chair up or down. Reporter: Including this dentist office in sausalito. All of the computers are down. The phone is down. Everything that we need to have a functioning office. Reporter: Some schools canceled. Others had their students working without electricity. To add to the frustration the pg&e website crashed leaving many residents in the dark as they try to figure out exactly how long the outage will last. To help pg&e launched a new website last night. There is a double fire threat here in northern California and in southern California where they could see their own power outages in the coming days. Robin. Tense situation. All right, thank you so much, will.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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