FOLSOM (AP/BCN) — A statewide Flex Alert issued by the California Independent System Operator (ISO) went into effect Monday afternoon as officials called for energy conservation.

The Flex Alert went into effect at 4 p.m. and is scheduled to last until 9 p.m.

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Officials said the alert is needed to stabilize the state’s electric grid because of the impact of the Bootleg Fire in Klamath County, Oregon, on electric transmission lines and the continuing heat wave across the Western United States.

The Bay Area was seeing significantly lower temperatures Monday, but much of Northern California remained under a moderate to high heat risk warning.

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During the Flex Alert, California electricity consumers are asked to set their thermostat to 78 degrees or higher, if health permits; avoid using major appliances; turn off unnecessary lights; use fans for cooling; and unplug unused electronics.

Similar Flex Alerts were issued for Friday and Saturday but no Flex Alert was in effect on Sunday.

In the hours prior to the Flex Alert taking effect, consumers were advised to take the following steps to help the state manage energy use later in the day:

  • Pre-cool your home by lowering the thermostat
  • If you need to use your major appliances, do it earlier in the day, when solar energy is abundant
  • Close window coverings to keep your home or apartment cool
  • Take advantage of the solar energy to charge electronic devices and electric vehicles so there’s no need to do it later, when solar is not available

The above steps can also help people be more comfortable when cutting back on their electricity usage.

Cal ISO said Saturday the Bootleg Fire took three transmission lines off-line, straining electricity supplies.

The Bootleg Fire grew to more than 153,500 acres overnight, advancing toward the popular Summer Lake recreation area early Monday.

For information on Flex Alerts, and to get more electricity conservation tips, visit the Cal ISO’s Flex Alert website.

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