© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Workers clear an area of a fallen tree as a Pacific storm known as an “Atmospheric River” approaches northern California, bringing heavy rains and winds that could trigger widespread flooding, in downtown San Francisco, California, U.S., Febru
(Reuters) – More than 600,000 homes and businesses were still without power in California early on Monday, according to data from PowerOutage.us, after an atmospheric river storm pounded the state with heavy rainfall and hurricane-force winds.
The storm is the second Pineapple Express weather system, or atmospheric river storm, to hit the state in the past week and arrived just as Los Angeles welcomed celebrities for the music industry’s Grammy awards.
According to PowerOutage.us, the utility with the most outages was Pacific Gas and Electric Co (PG&E (NYSE:)) with over 500,000 customers without power. PG&E is a unit of California energy company PG&E Corp.
“Since the start of the storm 24 hours ago, PG&E crews have restored more than 565,000 customers who lost power. Approximately 570,000 customers remain out of power,” PG&E said on its website.
California Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency in eight counties with a combined population of more than 20 million people, and flash flood warnings were issued for parts of Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.
The U.S. National Weather Service’s Los Angeles office said LA saw its third wettest day ever for the month of February since 1877 on Sunday, highlighting high risk for life-threatening and damaging flooding through Tuesday afternoon.
The next day base power prices in California’s SP-15 hub rose as high as $63.35 per megawatt-hour (MWh) for the 18th hour on Monday.