Frustrations grow as PG&E sends conflicting messages on potential for power outages

PG&E's ever delaying power outage in Contra Costa County has many business owners questioning whether to close or not to close.

"I feel like they're playing with their customers," says Young's Market owner Bob Kim.

Within a two-block radius of Young's Market some businesses were open, while others like Orinda Theater decided to shut its doors. Some owners say the constant back in forth from the power company has them on edge. 

"Since yesterday I have no idea if to open or to close. If they're going to shut it off or not. They say at midnight, now they say at 12 p.m., then they say between 12:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.," says Petra Cafe owner Azmi Masarweh. Masarweh owns two restaurants a block apart in Orinda.

With PG&E calling for possible outages, Masarweh decided not to open either store, fearing he would lose all of his inventory and a lot of money.

"We would work around it if we knew specific time. Oh, we're going to close at five. We would be open until five o'clock and then we would close. We know that. We do that. But the thing is we know nothing," says Masarweh. 

Next door to Petra Cafe is Sweet Dreams. The staff there says the decision to open paid off. "They buy sticker books, puzzles, and games. Because parents want kids to have more activities in the house," says Sweet Dreams manager Yolanda Sanchez.  

Over in Kensington, customers prepared for the worse. The demand caused a gas station to shut down their pumps, the only fuel they have left is diesel.  

Down the street at Young's Market, owner Bob Kim says PG&E wasn't prepared. Kim says not only did the utility company waste customer's time, but also their money.

Kim spent nearly $5,000 on supplies and items to create makeshift coolers. "I stayed the whole night to make this one. To save the ice-cream and frozen foods," said Kim.  

Still, with the possibility of losing power, some say it's better to be safe than sorry.

"We are getting some ice to put in some coolers. But we're not panicking cause it is what it is. Hopefully, it will be short-lived and we move on," says PG&E customer Sandy Bacskai.

"We hope that this all works out and that it was all for nothing. Because it was a good exercise and hopefully they're not fires that we need to fight," says PG&E customer Judy Bacskai.  

As of now, PG&E plans to cut the power in parts of Contra Costa County at 8:00 p.m.