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 September 15, 2015 - 8:00 PM EDT
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PG&E Donates $250,000 to American Red Cross to Ease California Wildfire Suffering and Will Match Up to an Additional $100,000 in Employee Donations

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) announced today that it is making a corporate donation of $250,000 to the American Red Cross to help ease the suffering from the destruction associated with the wildfires in Northern and Central California. Additionally, the company shared it will match up to another $100,000 in employee contributions for a total of up to $350,000.

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PG&E is working with first responders to safely and as quickly as possible restore service to custom ...

PG&E is working with first responders to safely and as quickly as possible restore service to customers affected by several wildfires burning in the state. Photo by Matthew Henderson

“These devastating wildfires across our service area have displaced thousands of our customers. Our thoughts are with all of them and their communities, and we want to do what we can to help ease their suffering. Whether it is earthquakes, winter storms or wildfires, we partner with the Red Cross because they are consistently there for our communities in times of need,” said Tony Earley, PG&E’s chairman and chief executive officer.

The American Red Cross is actively working throughout California to assist the tens of thousands of people displaced by wildfires, providing essential services such as food, water and shelter. In PG&E’s service area, the Red Cross has opened shelters near the Valley Fire in Lake and Napa Counties, the Butte Fire in Amador and Calaveras Counties, and the Rough Fire in Fresno County. PG&E is also coordinating employee volunteers to help staff these shelters.

“American Red Cross is so proud to be a partner with PG&E and is extremely grateful for their continued support of our mission to ensure communities are prepared and ready to respond to disasters immediately and are able to recover,” said Trevor Riggen, American Red Cross Northern California Coastal Regional CEO.

With this donation, which could reach $350,000, PG&E’s community investments with the American Red Cross will surpass $1 million for 2015. Since the Loma Prieta Earthquake in 1989, PG&E has donated more than $10.6 million in support of American Red Cross initiatives to improve community disaster preparedness and response.

“PG&E’s crews have been working around the clock to help the victims of the Valley Fire return their lives to normal. They care deeply about our community and this donation is just another demonstration of that commitment. We face a long and slow road back, but we will get there together with partners like PG&E, the Red Cross, our local government leaders and countless other volunteers and supporters,” said U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5).

PG&E and the American Red Cross urge California residents to create, update and practice their personal preparedness plans. September is National Preparedness Month and PG&E encourages customers to prepare.

Get ready for natural disasters before they happen

  • Prepare an emergency plan and conduct an emergency drill with your family.
  • Prepare an evacuation plan for your home. Each room should have at least two ways to escape in case one is blocked. Establish a place where your family can reunite.
  • Establish an alternative way to contact others who are not home, such as an out-of-the-area telephone contact.
  • Prepare and maintain an emergency preparedness kit with enough supplies on hand to be self-sufficient for at least three days, and preferably up to one week.
  • Know where your gas service shutoff valve is, and how to shut off your gas supply. The main shutoff valve is normally near your gas meter and will require the use of a 12- to 15-inch adjustable pipe or crescent-type wrench or other suitable tool.
  • Know which of your appliances uses gas and where the appliance shutoff valves are located. In some cases, turning off the gas at the appliance shutoff valve will suffice.
  • Know where the main electric switch is and how to turn off your electric supply.

Know what to do after an emergency

  • Check for injuries and ensure everyone is safe.
  • Check for damage. If you smell or hear gas escaping inside your home or business, get everyone outside and shut off the gas immediately.
  • Do not use electrical switches, appliances or phones because sparks can ignite gas. Do not check for a gas leak with a match or an open flame.
  • Once outside, use your phone from a safe location upwind where you can no longer smell gas to call 911 and PG&E at 1-800-743-5000.
  • Shut off the gas at the main gas service valve normally located near your gas meter by using a 12- to 15-inch adjustable wrench or other suitable tool to give the valve a quarter turn.
  • Once you shut off the gas, DO NOT turn it back on. Contact PG&E or another qualified professional to perform a safety inspection before the gas service is restored and the gas appliance pilots are re-lit.
  • If the power goes out, turn off all electric appliances to avoid overloading circuits and fire hazards when power is restored. Leave a single lamp on to alert you when power returns. Turn your appliances back on one at a time when conditions return to normal.
  • During a power outage, use battery-operated flashlights instead of candles due to the risk of fire. If you must use candles, keep them away from drapes, lamp shades and small children and never leave them unattended.
  • Treat all downed power lines as if they are energized and extremely dangerous. Keep yourself and others away from them. Call 911, and then notify PG&E at 1-800-743-5000.

For tips on preventing wildfires and preparing for and responding to natural disasters, visit and

About PG&E

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit and

Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Fiona Chan, 415-973-5930

Source: Business Wire (September 15, 2015 - 8:00 PM EDT)

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