Thousands still without power, but PG&E says it's trying smarter and shorter power shutoffs

The targeted outages that began overnight to about 167,000 homes and businesses in central and Northern California are the first by Pacific Gas & Electric since critics blasted last year’s shut-offs as poorly executed and overly broad. Customers were still without power on Wednesday morning, but the utility said if all goes well, power will be restored by evening.

Large-scale power outages not expected Wednesday

The organization that oversees California's power grid does not expect large-scale power outages Wednesday, provided that residents across the state conserve energy during peak hours the way they did the previous three days.

Heat wave still threatens California's power grid with outages

However, grid managers warned that the threat of outages remained as temperatures were expected to hit triple digits again in many areas of the state. The National Weather Service said it may take until Friday or Saturday before excess heat watches and warnings ease.