Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) announced today that it is contributing a $250,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator(s) who fired gunshots that caused extensive damage to its Metcalf Transmission Substation near San Jose nearly one year ago.
Over the past year, PG&E's Electric Operations team has partnered closely with federal, state and local agencies to enhance the security of critical substations across its service territory. These efforts include:
- Security guards to provide 24/7 coverage;
- Trimming back undergrowth around substations to remove potential hiding places;
- Fencing and shielding to obstruct views and protect critical substation components;
- Enhanced camera technology; and
- Increased lighting.
"Today's economy and our quality of life depend on electricity. We are committed to taking aggressive action to ensure that our facilities are protected so we can continue to deliver safe, reliable and affordable service to our customers," said Geisha Williams, executive vice president of electric operations for PG&E. "Our job from day one was to work with law enforcement authorities to support their investigations. With this reward, we hope to bring the perpetrator or perpetrators to justice. We would also like to thank law enforcement for their exhaustive work with this case."
In addition to the actions PG&E has already taken at critical facilities, the company is investing approximately $100 million over the next three years on substation security for its highest priority facilities. Among other measures, PG&E's plans include enhanced intruder detection systems and buffer zones through additional fencing.
PG&E has also proactively partnered with other utilities and industry associations to share information and identify new and innovative ways to further protect the electric grid.
"PG&E has been a valuable partner to the electric power industry as we continuously work to apply the lessons learned from all incidents and threats to strengthen grid security and resiliency," said Jim Fama, vice president of energy delivery for the Edison Electric Institute. "Securing and protecting the electric grid are top priorities for the electric power industry. Significant investments are being made across the industry to improve security, and we continue to closely coordinate with federal, state, and local governments to enhance information sharing to better identify and respond to evolving physical and cyber security threats to the grid."