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Protecting you and your community from wildfire

At APS, our teams work year-round with public safety partners, first responders and wildfire experts in our communities to prevent, reduce and respond to wildfires. As part of our efforts, we’re reducing the risk of wildfires by:

  • inspecting more than 38,000 miles of power lines to clear overgrown vegetation
  • creating defensible space by removing vegetation around poles and substations
  • using advanced technology to troubleshoot issues more quickly, reduce the number of customers impacted and decrease the duration of outages

A new tool to reduce wildfire risk

While we have had a proactive wildfire prevention program for many years, we are expanding the number of methods and techniques we use to reduce wildfire risk, due to increasing extreme weather conditions.

Starting May 2024, we’re adding a new way to protect our customers, employees and communities from wildfire, to be used only during extremely high-fire risk conditions. It’s called Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS).

In these conditions, we may shut off power to your area to prevent the electric system from starting or contributing to a wildfire through a downed wire or inadvertent spark. This can include periods of high winds, which can cause trees to contact lines and start a wildfire.

The decision to call a Public Safety Power Shutoff is based on several factors that impact the potential for fire and how fast a fire might grow in the area, such as:


Available combustible material in the area, such as dense, dry brush
 

Terrain that would impact fire direction and growth
 

Weather, including high wind speed and gusts

These conditions may be occurring away from your home or business, but near APS power lines that provide you power, so it may not be immediately obvious why we are using a planned safety outage.


Impacted communities

Public Safety Power Shutoffs could impact customers in the highest fire-risk communities located in northern Arizona. These communities include parts of Coconino, Gila and Yavapai counties.

A tool we will only use when necessary to help prevent wildfires

We recognize that planned safety outages create hardships for our customers and communities. However, we are committed to public safety and preventing fires is a top priority.


Stay informed if there is a Public Safety Power Shutoff in your area.

When your contact information is current, it helps us keep you informed if there is an outage.

Medically sensitive customers

Medically sensitive customers

In the event of an outage, we will make every effort to notify vulnerable customers on our Medical Care Program who depend on electricity for life-saving medical equipment. If you or someone in your household has a life-threatening illness or uses critical medical equipment, we encourage you to apply for the Medical Care Program. You will need to enroll each year.


Questions and Answers

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The time span of a Public Safety Power Shutoff can depend on how long extreme weather conditions last and extent of damage to electrical lines and equipment. Once extreme fire risk conditions diminish, field crews will inspect the lines that were shut off. If there is no damage, electricity will be restored during daylight hours. In most cases, if a Public Safety Power Shutoff is called, power will be restored after about 20 hours, but the actual duration will depend on current weather conditions and if any equipment repairs are needed.


How crews get power back on after a Public Safety Power Shutoff



1. Patrol lines and look for damage
Get eyes on lines via crew or drone; determine what repairs are needed

2. Make the site safe for repairs
Redirect traffic, secure job site

3. Make repairs
Remove damaged equipment; trim trees; dig holes; install poles; string power lines; safety checks

4. Restore power
Notify customers; clean up job site

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We will communicate with impacted customers often and at regular intervals via email, text or phone call if a Public Safety Power Shutoff is expected or if one occurs. For example, you’ll receive:


Planning notification in advance based on extreme weather and fire condition forecasts

Updated timing each day leading up to a shutoff

Public Safety Power Shutoff cancellation if weather and fire conditions improve

Status updates with an estimate of when power will turn back on and/or information on resources available

Please verify your contact information is up to date on your aps.com account. Text and email alerts are the fastest ways for us to reach you.

Note: Extreme weather can be erratic and may impact the exact timing of advance notification.

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  • Create an APS account. Already have an account? Make sure your contact information is up to date with your email address and cell phone number to receive alerts by signing in to your aps.com account.
  • Get emergency alerts in your area and have an emergency plan for your family and pets.
  • Store important phone numbers for medical providers, family, friends and APS in your cell phone or near your home phone.
  • Make sure your cell phone is fully charged, and if possible, consider buying a portable charger.
  • Keep your APS account number readily available.
  • Have resources ready like flashlights, batteries, a radio, non-perishable food items that are easy to prepare without power, including pet and baby food and extra water, at least one gallon per person per day.
  • Stock utensils and basic tools like a non-electric can opener.
  • Make sure you have a basic first-aid kit, medications and toiletries.
  • Learn to manually open your automatic garage door or security gates.
  • If you or someone in your household has a life-threatening illness or uses critical medical equipment that requires electricity, consider applying for our Medical Care Program.
  • During an outage, check aps.com/outages for cooling shelters, community resources and dry ice reimbursements. During an event, resources will be available on our outage map.

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In the event of an outage, we will make every effort to notify vulnerable customers on our Medical Care Program who depend on electricity for life-saving medical equipment. If you or someone in your household has a life-threatening illness or uses critical medical equipment, we encourage you to apply for the Medical Care Program. You will need to enroll each year.

Questions?

Our Customer Experience Team is here to help. Call (800) 253-9405 or (602) 371-7171 in metro Phoenix.

father child forest

Wildfire Safety

We work year-round to prepare for wildfires. Learn more about our preparations and how you can stay safe and prepared.
Rural power lines against a purple and yellow sunset.

Outage Center

Visit our Outage Center to view our interactive outage map for details on current outages in your area or to find safety tips and see your outage history.
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