Californians on Wednesday found themselves facing winds, wildfires and darkness from yet another power outage that hit more than 1 million people.

Frustration and anger mounted across Northern California as Pacific Gas & Electric, the state’s largest utility, began its third round of sweeping blackouts in a week aimed at preventing its electrical equipment from being fouled by wind-whipped branches or toppling and sparking wildfires.

Meanwhile, fires continued to burn at both ends of the state.

Strong winds send embers flying across Ida Clayton Rd. as the Kincade Fire burns in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews raced to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Strong winds send embers flying across Ida Clayton Rd. as the Kincade Fire burns in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews raced to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

PG&E said Tuesday’s blackouts would affect about 1.5 million people in some 30 counties including the Sierra foothills, wine country and San Francisco Bay Area. They included 1 million still without power from a shut-off over the weekend.

With no electricity for the fourth straight day Tuesday, chef and caterer Jane Sykes realized she would have to throw out $1,000 worth of food, including trays of brownies, cupcakes and puff pastry.

She also had little hope of getting a good night’s sleep — there was no way to run the machine she relies on to counter her apnea.

Strong winds send embers flying across Ida Clayton Rd. as the Kincade Fire burns in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews raced to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Strong winds send embers flying across Ida Clayton Rd. as the Kincade Fire burns in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews raced to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

“I don’t think PG&E really thought this through,” she lamented.

PG&E officials said they understood the hardships caused by the safety blackouts but continued to insist they were necessary.

In the wine country, firefighters on Tuesday coped with 30-mph (48.28-kph) gusts while tackling a wildfire that has burned 86 homes and charred an area more than twice the size of San Francisco. About 90,000 buildings remained threatened. More than 150,000 people were under evacuation orders.

Firefighters work to douse a flare-up as the Kincade Fire burns through a vineyard in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews raced to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Firefighters work to douse a flare-up as the Kincade Fire burns through a vineyard in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews raced to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

The winds were expected to ease in the north Wednesday but red flag conditions would remain because of hot, dry weather.

Meanwhile, ferocious Santa Ana winds returned to Southern California, where a fire that erupted Monday in the tony Brentwood area of Los Angeles has destroyed a dozen homes.

About 9,000 people, including Arnold Schwarzenegger and LeBron James, remained under evacuation orders.

A helicopter prepares to drop water while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
A helicopter prepares to drop water while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

That fire was caused when a dry branch from a eucalyptus tree was flung 30 feet (9 meters) by high winds into a city Department of Water and Power line, which short-circuited and sparked, the utility and Fire Department announced Tuesday.

The power line had been operating safely and the DWP had cut away brush and trees from around the line, officials said.

Mayor Eric Garcetti called it an “act of God.”

Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019.  (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

The National Weather Service called an extreme red flag warning for much of Southern California through Thursday evening, with some wind gusts reaching 80 mph (128.74 kph). It could be the strongest wind event in years.

Coupled with tinder-dry brush and low humidity, they could blow the smoldering fire back to life and spread embers to start new blazes, authorities warned.

Southern California Edison, which had previously made safety shutoffs and then restored power, warned that it could black out more than 300,000 customers, or some 600,000 people.

Firefighters pass a burning structure as the Kincade fire burns in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019.  (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Firefighters pass a burning structure as the Kincade fire burns in Calistoga, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

Also Tuesday, Edison announced in a quarterly earnings report that it was “likely” its equipment caused last year’s Woolsey Fire, which killed three people and destroyed hundreds of homes in a swatch stretching from north of Los Angeles south through Malibu to the sea.

No deaths were reported from the current fires but weekend gusts may have claimed three lives. A 55-year-old homeless woman was crushed by a falling tree during high winds Sunday at a Santa Cruz campsite and a couple was killed the same day in a remote area of Madera County when a tree fell on their Jeep, which then crashed.

Across Northern California, people who weren’t facing another day as fire refugees were worried about charging cellphones and electric vehicles, finding gasoline and cash, staying warm and keeping their food from spoiling.

Firefighter Josh Petrell monitors the Kincade Fire burning near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Firefighter Josh Petrell monitors the Kincade Fire burning near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

Some ended up at centers set up by PG&E where people could go to power their electronics and get free water, snacks, flashlights and solar lanterns.

In Placer County, Angel Smith relied on baby wipes and blankets to keep her 13-month-old son Liam warm and clean. The family has been without power since Saturday night and cannot draw well water without electricity.

She ran a cord from her neighbors’ generator to keep her phone and tablet charged so the two could watch movies. Temperatures were expected to drop below freezing overnight in parts of Northern California.

Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

“The hardest part about this for me has been making sure I keep my son warm as it gets cold here,” Smith said.

PG&E, which is in bankruptcy after its equipment was blamed for a string of disastrous fires over the past three years, including a blaze that all but destroyed the town of Paradise and killed 85 people, has said its foremost concern is public safety.

But Gov. Gavin Newsom and top utility regulators have accused the company of mismanaging its power system and failing for decades to make the investments needed to ensure it’s more durable. He and others have also complained that the utility has botched the outages by not keeping the public adequately informed.

Firefighters monitor the Kincade Fire burning near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving, as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Firefighters monitor the Kincade Fire burning near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving, as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

PG&E Corp. President Bill Johnson says he talked to Newsom Tuesday and told him he agreed with his suggestion that the company give credits to customers who’ve been hit by pre-emptive power shut-offs. Newsom had suggested $100 per household, or $250 per business.

Johnson said the utility has agreed to provide a “one-time bill credit” for people impacted by an Oct. 9 power cutoff that affected some 2 million people. But he didn’t confirm a figure, saying the mechanics had yet to be worked out.

“We have agreed to move forward with a one-time bill credit for customers impacted by that event.”

Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving, as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving, as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019.  (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Inmate firefighters prepare to battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
An air tanker drops retardant while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving, as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
An air tanker drops retardant while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving, as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
An air tanker drops retardant while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
An air tanker drops retardant while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. The overall weather picture in northern areas is improving as powerful, dry winds bring extreme fire weather to Southern California. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
From left, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin and California Governor Gavin Newsom view a burned and home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin and California Governor Gavin Newsom view a burned and home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, California Governor Gavin Newsom and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, California Governor Gavin Newsom and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin and California Governor Gavin Newsom view a burned and home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin and California Governor Gavin Newsom view a burned and home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, California Governor Gavin Newsome, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, California Governor Gavin Newsome, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, California Governor Gavin Newsom and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, California Governor Gavin Newsom and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, California L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti and California Governor Gavin Newsom tour Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, California L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti and California Governor Gavin Newsom tour Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin and California Governor Gavin Newsom view a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin and California Governor Gavin Newsom view a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, California Governor Gavin Newsom, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
From left, California Governor Gavin Newsom, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin, and L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti tour a burned home along Tigertail Road in Brentwood, Calif., Tuesday Oct. 29, 2019. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool)
Inmate firefighters battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Inmate firefighters battle the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
A helicopter drops water while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
A helicopter drops water while battling the Kincade Fire near Healdsburg, Calif., on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019. Millions of people have been without power for days as fire crews race to contain two major wind-whipped blazes that have destroyed dozens of homes at both ends of the state: in Sonoma County wine country and in the hills of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Firefighter Alex DeLeon, of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., bundles up against the cold wind on a ridge between Sonoma and Lake County as the Kincade fire burns, Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019, in northern California. The flames prompted a flurry of false fire reports on the Santa Rosa plain. (Kent Porter/The Press Democrat via AP)
Firefighter Alex DeLeon, of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., bundles up against the cold wind on a ridge between Sonoma and Lake County as the Kincade fire burns, Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019, in northern California. The flames prompted a flurry of false fire reports on the Santa Rosa plain. (Kent Porter/The Press Democrat via AP)
Fire crews continue to battle a blaze in Sonoma County, California, as forecasters call for a return of high winds to the region. (Oct. 29)
Fire crews continue to battle a blaze in Sonoma County, California, as forecasters call for a return of high winds to the region. (Oct. 29)
Los Angeles firefighters are working to increase containment of a wildfire in the city's Brentwood area before a new round of gusty Santa Ana winds raise the wildfire threat. (Oct. 29)
Los Angeles firefighters are working to increase containment of a wildfire in the city’s Brentwood area before a new round of gusty Santa Ana winds raise the wildfire threat. (Oct. 29)
Fire crews in Northern California are working to smother wildfires using aircraft to drop water and fire retardant before windstorms return to the area.  About 156,000 people were under mandatory evacuation orders. (Oct. 29)
Fire crews in Northern California are working to smother wildfires using aircraft to drop water and fire retardant before windstorms return to the area. About 156,000 people were under mandatory evacuation orders. (Oct. 29)
Cal Fire reported on Tuesday night that the Kincade Fire in Sonoma County, Northern California was 15% contained. It also said that the fire has burned more than 76,000 acres since it began on October 23rd. (Oct. 30)
Cal Fire reported on Tuesday night that the Kincade Fire in Sonoma County, Northern California was 15% contained. It also said that the fire has burned more than 76,000 acres since it began on October 23rd. (Oct. 30)