MILL VALLEY (KPIX 5) – PG&E has not shut off power in Marin in light of extreme weather yet, but many believe it is inevitable because parts of the county are considered high risk for wildfires.
If there is a blackout, business owners say could be chaotic and crippling, especially if it lasts days.
The family-owned Mill Valley Market has been serving the community since 1929.
But a days-long shutoff may make that impossible, if the owners don’t come up with a backup plan.
“We are exploring the possibility of getting a generator. For a number of reasons, we don’t want to lose our product of course, but we also want to provide a service for the community,” said Mill Valley Market Co-Owner Doug Canepa.
Canepa says that option won’t come cheap. He estimates it’ll be in the six figures.
“We are very concerned about the cost and to run this type of operation, it’s going to have to be a big generator and we have to find a location to put it,” he added.
PG&E has told its customers that outages are likely to come, as part of its strategy for preventing wildfires. It has been blamed for some of the state’s deadliest and most destructive fires.
“I think it’s good that they’re thinking about preventative measures, but I’m really quite concerned about it, not just from the point of view of business, but from my very own point of view,” said Priscilla Wanat of Tiburon. “What am I supposed to do with all those things in the freezer?”
PG&E says it plans to give 48 hours notice to customers who may be affected by a shutoff. But that may not always be the case, so everyone should be prepared.

Tiburon is hosting a community meeting to discuss proactive plans with residents and business owners at Del Mar Middle School on Monday at 10 a.m.

PG&E is encouraging customers to sign up for outage alerts on its website to get the latest on service interruptions and to learn more about wildfire safety.