Dealing with PG&E Shutoffs in Rocklin, California Just Got a Little Easier!
When PG&E first announced the Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) program, I procrastinated. Honestly, I didn’t think it would affect our little city of Rocklin. But it did! Parts of Rocklin went dark in the first PSPS event a few weeks ago, and it caught many of us a bit off-guard. My family had hardly any preparation. We had nothing but a few flashlights and candles to deal with nearly two-days of PSPS. During this first PSPS outage, we had to deal with frozen and perishable food and anxiety about security.
Many of us shared frustrations and ideas on sites and apps like NextDoor about PSPS and PG&E in general. Many Californians do not trust PG&E as-is. PG&E needs to improve rapidly or be broken down into smaller utility companies. Also, their communication methods are very underpowered!
During the first PSPS event, their website failed to the extent that they had to disable customer pages. They made people check addresses manually again and again. People who wanted to check multiple locations such as home, office, parents’ house, etc. experienced a lot of frustration.
Nowadays, we get messages from them saying we need to check if we are affected or not, that’s about it! They are putting the burden of getting the information onto us. Instead, they need to provide accurate and specific information for each of their customers.
So, we decided to do something about it, in whatever small way we could for our neighbors in Rocklin!
We built our own PSPS alert service!
We built a web app called ROCKL.IN, which can be accessed from:
This site allows Rocklin residents to sign up for text (SMS) or email alerts for one or more street addresses in Rocklin.
Our system automatically checks PSPS impact status for each address every few minutes. If the status changes, for example, say an address goes from not impacted to impacted or vice versa, we text or email an alert immediately. We send one alert per address whenever the status changes. So you don’t get spammed!
Anyone interested in monitoring one or more Rocklin addresses can sign up for free. We also made it very easy to add or remove addresses so that you can decide if you want to continue to use it or not. We don’t share the contact information with PG&E or anyone else. Here is a video intro:
Clap if you like it! Give us your feedback in the comments below so that we can improve our free services for our neighbors!
Who are we?
We are a small technology company called EVOKNOW, Inc. We have been in Rocklin for nearly a decade. Before Rocklin, we had our offices in Sacramento since 2002. We specialize in mid-range enterprise e-commerce technology for customers with multinational e-commerce business interests. We also have a few self-funded startups in the works!
Update #1 Nov 19, 2019
So far we have a few dozen Rocklin neighbors who trusted us to monitor their important addresses. We are delighted to monitor their addresses for PG&E PSPS outage. We hope the numbers will grow to hundreds so that we can expand this project to monitor fire and crime.