SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. - With planned power outages in certain weather conditions, some homeowners and businesses are trying to do all they can to keep their lights on. One real life incident happened September 7 at the Circle Bar B ranch about three miles up in a remote area of Refugio Canyon.
" You really need to get prepared for this," said owner Kathy Brown Tammietti.
She experienced what was a Saturday night outage and into Sunday morning during a moderate wind event along the Goleta and Gaviota coast. Southern California Edison had issued a warning and the conditions reached the threshhold to cut the power as a fire prevention plan.
Some branches snapped but Brown says " I had gotten prepared ahead of time because they said there would be a possible power shutdown and I got several lanterns."
. It was on a night with a prescheduled birthday party, and a ranch dinner was prepared on site.
In the darkness, lanterns were used, and some ate by the light of their cell phones.
For the live band a back up generator was brought in for the three hour show
It's a reality the owners say they and many others will have to gear up for especially in critical areas. "Where our refrigeration and freezers are. Our computers and our phone system. That's what we are looking at concentrating on first," said Tammietti. "But we are looking into other power sources of back up power should this happen again. This is our livelihood this is our family business and I am sure this holds true of a lot of businesses in the power shut off area"
Southern California Edison has been reaching out to governments and citizens about the plan on several levels.
Edison Government relations spokesperson Rondi Guthrie recently told the Santa Barbara City Council, "We have had dozens of meetings with your county of office of emergency management and we also have a public campaign called the 'power of being prepared' and we would like to take the time to remind people to have an emergency plan"
For this 80 year old ranch, known for its scenic horseback riding trail trips, weddings, private parties and special getaways, some of the light and power issues might make it even more authentic.
"I think people come out here to get away from a lot of the city lights and I think they realize we are out here in the country and something like this could happen," said Tammietti. "We're just gonna do whatever we can to make sure we are prepared for it as long as we are given sufficient notice by Edison."