PG&E dismantles fallen transmission tower in San Jose, thousands still without power in South Bay

Crews continue working to restore power to homes and businesses throughout the South Bay. In one San Jose neighborhood, a transmission tower collapsed after it was hit by a tree.   

When the tower collapsed, it took down several trees and a man living along a nearby creek, told KTVU he barely escaped being crushed. Now with a break from the rain, crews are making progress dismantling the tower, so it can be replaced.  

"I saw this on the news yesterday. I figured I’d bike out and check it out. It’s on my daily bike ride, but I’ve never seen anything like this," said Michael Ames, from San Jose.      

Pacific Gas & Electric's crews have been working since Tuesday to disassemble this transmission tower in the Willow Glen neighborhood of San Jose. A large Eucalyptus tree fell and destroyed the tower and at least three other power poles in the area came down during the storm. One man who lives nearby said he’s glad his power was restored so quickly.   

"I’m just amazed that they got the power running as soon as they did. It went out about 2 o’clock in the morning. I heard the UPS beeping on my computer and 16 hours later, everything’s back up and running again. So I guess they redirected everything, and now they’re in the cleanup phase," Ames said.    

PG&E released a statement Thursday saying:  

"All customers impacted by the tower and pole issues in Willow Glen have been safely restored. We have temporary solutions in place for those various equipment issues, and permanent solutions will be set in place later this month." 

PG&E reports the number of affected customers as 5 p.m. on Thursday:

San Francisco 4

Peninsula 241

North Bay 586

East Bay 292

South Bay 5,566

Bay Area Total 6,689

Central Coast 6126

On Lincoln Avenue across the street from the tower, there were still a few businesses without power as of 5 p.m. on Thursday. Willow Den Public House is using a generator for power to keep its doors open for business. This 24-hour carwash was also operating again, and one customer spoke about the impact losing power had on residents.   

"Oh, they lost everything in the frig. And now, you know what, it’s very expensive. So people cannot afford to buy it one more time. Imagine somebody bought food and that happened the other day. So now it’s spoiled this week. They worked hard to buy it and lost everything," said Dora Cortes, who was using the carwash Thursday evening.      

PG&E says it’ll continue working to get power back to customers throughout the South Bay but unfortunately, there is more rain on the way this weekend and throughout next week. People should continue to be prepared and do what they can stay safe.