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Silicon Valley Urged to Save Energy After Bullets Hit Substation

| April 16, 2013
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pg&eSAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Several Pacific Gas & Electric transformers in San Jose were damaged after being hit by gunfire early Tuesday, and state officials urged the utility’s customers in the San Jose area to conserve electricity in response.

Authorities received multiple phone calls reporting gun shots near the utility’s substation at 1:46 a.m. Tuesday, said Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Deputy Kurtis Stenderup. PG&E reported two hours later that at least five transformers had been damaged and hazardous materials had spilled, he added.

The California Independent System Operator, which manages most of the state’s power grid, issued a statement asking residents and businesses in the area to conserve electricity through midnight Tuesday. Spokeswoman Stephanie McCorkle said the damage will limit electricity transmission in that area of the high-voltage grid.

Fire crews and PG&E workers were cleaning up the hazardous materials and authorities have closed the area to investigate. Stenderup said because law enforcement officials have not yet been able to fully investigate the crime scene, they cannot speculate on who might be responsible.

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