California Public Safety Power Shutoff Business Owners Guide
California Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) Business Owners Guide
Keep Working Even When the Grid Doesn’t
California Public Safety Power Business Owners Guide
Throughout California, utilities PG&E, SCE and SDG&E are advising businesses to prepare for Public Safety Power Shutoffs this fire season. These shutoffs, or PSPS, will cut power to potentially 11 million residential customers and businesses in high-risk fire areas as a means to reduce the likelihood of wildfires caused by transmission lines. During the last two years, more than 16,500 wildfires ignited across California, and in the past 4 years, equipment owned by California’s three largest investor-owned utilities have been deemed responsible for sparking more than 2,000 fires.
The utilities forecast that a PSPS could last hours, days or even weeks depending on high wind and weather conditions. What will an hour, day or week without power cost mean for your business?
According to ITIC’s 2019 Reliability and Hourly Cost of Downtime Trends Survey, on average, each hour of downtime costs a business more than $100,000, while 86% of companies report that the cost exceeds $300,000. Beyond those averages, one-third of companies say an hour of downtime costs them $1 million or more. Layer on the potential human impact of lost wages on your workforce, and the potential costs of PSPS to California businesses is staggering.
The utilities have implemented a joint power outage preparedness campaign: ‘The Power of Being Prepared’.
But SimpliPhi Wants to Do More.
Like you, we are a California company whose Ventura County-based employees and business operations are vulnerable to Public Safety Power Shutoffs. During the 2017 Thomas Fires and the 2018 Woolsey and Hill fires, we relied personally on the technology we design, manufacture and sell every day. Our own experience inspires our dedication to making sure that all California residents and businesses have the ability to safely and reliably generate their own power, store it, and utilize it on their terms — even taking it with them in an evacuation. We are committed to ensuring that your business is equipped to make it through every PSPS and any other grid outage.
That is why we have introduced our “Energize California” initiative.
SimpliPhi energy storage and management systems can help you defend against losing vital revenue due to grid outages that undermine mission critical systems, equipment, servers, networks, payment systems, communications and more. Our energy storage solutions keep your business up and running and safeguard against energy-related losses. To help you deploy solutions as quickly as possible, our Energize California program offers discounted pricing, expedited shipping and connections to installation professionals throughout California.
Step One: Understand Your Backup Power Options
Diesel or gas generators are not the only emergency back-up power available and, when combined with SimpliPhi’s safe, indoor/outdoor battery powered generators (ExprESS & AccESS), precious and often scarce fuel can be preserved during prolonged power shutoffs. SimpliPhi’s commercial, mobile and portable backup power storage solutions feature lithium ferro phosphate (LFP), offering significant advantages:
- They are ready when you need them. SimpliPhi’s energy storage and emergency power solutions do not require annual maintenance and lose less than1% of their charge on a monthly basis when not in use.
- SimpliPhi’s energy storage can be used indoors or outdoors without ventilation, cooling or the risk of overheating or fire. LFP does not contain cobalt, the source of toxicity, hazards and ‘thermal runaway’ associated with other lithium batteries. LFP is environmentally benign, non-toxic and safe to use as a personal power source — even with extended use.
- For businesses who have already invested in fuel-based generators, adding a SimpliPhi energy storage solution can improve generator performance, extend its life, save fuel and extend your energy budget during an outage. With SimpliPhi batteries, a generator changes its role from being a source of primary power to a source for charging power. Once the PHI batteries are charged, the generator is turned off until it’s time to charge again.
By contrast, consider the constraints of using fuel-based generators:
Most of today’s gas station fuel pumps require electricity to operate. Once your fuel reserves have been depleted, it will likely be difficult or impossible to find additional fuel to power your generators.
Fuel-based generators release carbon monoxide and toxic pollutants, making it unsafe to use them inside a business or even in a parking garage. Opening windows does not help — the carbon monoxide in generator exhaust can sicken or kill.
Step Two: Understand Your Solar Array As Back-Up
If you have installed grid-tied rooftop or ground-mount solar without energy storage, you will lose power during an outage. Grid-tied solar arrays feed electricity to the grid, not your business. Adding a battery bank to an existing solar installation will allow you to disconnect or ‘island’ from the grid during a blackout and continue to generate, store and use your own power until the utility service is restored.
Step Three: Understand How Much Power You Will Need
How much electricity do you want at your disposal when the grid goes down? Storage solutions are as diverse as the range of businesses who need them. One company might decide to size its battery bank to provide power only for critical loads like servers and communications, while another could desire a battery bank sized to support a facility or campus’ entire utility load.
|PHI Batteries||Hard wired*|
|AccESS Energy Storage System||Turn-key hard wired*|
|ExprESS Mobile AC Generator||Turn-key mobile or hard wired*|
|Genny Emergency Kits||Portable|
*Initial installation by a licensed C10 or C46 electrician required
SimpiPhi’s applications engineers and I.Q. Certified Installers can help you calculate how much energy storage capacity you will need and what solution is best for you. Little and Big Genny Emergency Kits can be purchased directly from Amazon.
Know Your Manufacturer
When it comes to emergency power, failure is not an option. SimpliPhi’s storage solutions have been proven in the field for a decade, including by the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Safety is also critical. SimpliPhi storage solutions are ideally suited for use in regions prone to wildfires because they feature the safest, cobalt-free lithium ion chemistry: there are no toxic hazards, no fumes and no risk of fire from the battery itself. Many consumers do not realize that most other lithium ion batteries contain cobalt — which can be incredibly dangerous in a fire because there is no means to extinguish a cobalt battery that catches fire, and because cobalt fires produce deadly, toxic fumes.
Not only does SimpliPhi have a proven global track record you can trust, our California operations lend us unique insight into the wildfire and PSPS problems and the ideal solutions that home and business owners want and need to cope. Through Energize California, we’re committed to ensuring every Californian is truly able to realize the power of being prepared.