SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) – The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) has announced a statewide Flex Alert for Thursday afternoon, due to anticipated high demand for electricity amid unseasonably high temperatures.

Officials are urging Californians to conserve electricity between the hours of 3 p.m. and 10 p.m.

“With high temperatures in the forecast, the power grid operator predicts an increase in electricity demand, primarily from air conditioning use,” CAISO said in a statement.

Californians are urged to voluntarily follow conservation measures including turning off unnecessary lights, delaying the use of major appliances until after 10 p.m. and setting air conditioner thermostats to 78 degrees or higher.

The Flex Alert comes as the Bay Area is expected to see high temperatures soaring into the 80s and 90s along the coast and into the 100s inland on Thursday and Friday, with conditions remaining mild overnight. The National Weather Service has declared a Heat Advisory for the region from 11 a.m. Thursday through 9 p.m. Friday.

Along with the heat, expected strong offshore winds has increased the danger for wildfires. A Red Flag Warning has been declared for the North Bay and East Bay hills and valleys, along with the Santa Cruz Mountains through 11 a.m. Friday.

As a precaution, Pacific Gas & Electric Co. has enacted its Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS), turning off power to more than 50,000 customers in 24 counties, including some in the Bay Area due to the risk of wildfires. Electricity service is expected to be restored on Friday.

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