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San Carlos neighbors fed up with SDG&E project, claiming excessive noise and disruption

SDG&E Fire hardening project
Posted at 1:04 PM, Jul 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-04 21:36:19-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — A San Carlos community says that San Diego Gas & Electric workers have wreaked havoc in their neighborhood with excessive noise, dust, and fumes.

However, SDG&E says that it’s doing the best it can to respect the neighborhood.

The utility company says it’s a four-acre staging area off of Mission Gorge Road and Mission Vista Drive. The staging area is for electrical equipment that it needs to build a four-mile long fire hardening project with steel poles at the neighboring Mission Trails park.

“There is an enormous amount of dust and fumes coming off of this site. In addition, they've had helicopter that've been staged here, taking off and landing, which is very close to our homes and sometimes carrying equipment right over our roofs,” said neighbor Jeanice Lee who added, “Neighbors have been woken up in the morning. It's very early, sometimes at 3 a.m. or 3:30 a.m.”

The project started in February and is expected to go until September or October.

“We're still in COVID. We're still in limited supply chain issues and we're doing our best to address all of that and to be a good neighbor. That's what's most important,” said SDG&E spokesperson Anthony Wagner.

He said that SDG&E chose that location because the project requires that they use helicopters to carry equipment. After working with the FAA, he said that they determined it was the best spot to not interfere with Montgomery Field’s air traffic.

“This is the most environmentally sound area and this is the most responsible place for safety so that we don't have the aircraft travel over people, roads or homes as we conduct our air operation,” he added.

Wagner admitted that there were some bumps in the road early on but said that now they're in daily communication with the community, and scaling work hours back to 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

He said that there will be another day or two of air operations in July and again when the project is near completion.

Neighbors say that they understand why SDG&E has to do this work, but it doesn't make their lives any easier. “We’re upset about [the] disruption to our lives,” added Lee.