Sacramento, California - Working aggressively to protect Californians from the winter storms impacting much of the state, Governor Gavin Newsom Wednesday issued the following statement on emergency response efforts now underway.

“At my direction, the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services has activated the State Operations Center to monitor storm conditions and coordinate all necessary assistance. I want to thank all our emergency responders for working diligently through trying weather conditions to keep our communities safe. I strongly encourage all Californians to avoid making the situation worse and refrain from traveling on mountain roads until conditions improve.”

Governor Newsom also directed members of his cabinet to take appropriate actions to mitigate the impact of weather conditions on the most vulnerable Californians. This includes coordinating with investor-owned utilities to rapidly restore power.

Since December 24th, Caltrans has deployed 1,350 field staff working in 24-hour rotating shifts to keep roads open and assist impacted communities. Caltrans has also redirected all available crews, assisted with 600 snowplows, and cleared hundreds of downed trees. The California Highway patrol has also assisted stranded motorists, directed heavy traffic loads, and provided food and water for those in need.