Home > Uncategorized > Our Friend John Lindsey

Our Friend John Lindsey

If you caught the show Wednesday night, or if you’ve seen this morning’s Tribune, you know the sad news about John Lindsey being laid off from PG&E. Everyone at KVEC is saddened and stunned by this news. John has been such a community resource over the years with his top-notch weather reports and he was such a fine goodwill ambassador for the company.

John has no comment, but other employees have been calling and emailing me to discuss a new vice-president who has come to town with a hatchet and is cutting left and right. John sadly was in the crosshairs.

So I’m asking all of us to put aside our differences for the ten minutes it might take to make a phone call or send an email. The only chance we have is to go over the head of this local v.p. and appeal directly to the head office in San Francisco. Please contact PG&E and ask them to keep John on as staff meteorologist.

Your best bets:

Bill Morrow: President & CEO wtm4@pge.com

Peter Darbee Chairman & CEO peter.darbee@pge-corp.com 1-415-267-7118

Believe me, John is a man of unquestionable integrity and humanity. He is worth every minute, every second, it takes to send an email or make a call.

Thank you!

  1. Mary in SLO
    September 27, 2007 at 1:10 pm

    John Lindsey’s weather reports are more up to date and accurate than anyone else’s. My friends and I depend on his forecasts for many of our activities throughout the county. It does not seem possible than a nuclear power plant does not need the services of an accurate, careful weatherman. We hope PG&E reconsiders this action. John is an asset to the community in many ways, and we are saddened and outraged to see him dismissed.

  2. Rich from Paso
    September 27, 2007 at 1:31 pm

    The truly saddening part of this is that I found a weatherman at Diablo Canyon more accurate and more informed than any of the local weather-casters and most of the national weather folk. John’s expertise and his natural, good-guy personality will be missed on the Central Coast.

  3. Barbara from AG
    September 27, 2007 at 6:20 pm

    I would like to tell you how disappointed I am that Mr. John Lindsey has
    lost his job out at Diablo Canyon in Avila Beach. Although I have never met
    John in person, I thoroughly enjoyed hearing him on KVEC radio with his
    superb weather reports. I have come to actually think of him as a friend
    via the airwaves.

    I have also come to depend on his email weather reports in planning
    everything these days. He seems to be the only one who can actually get
    things right. He is a unique human being and I think you are making a big
    mistake by letting him go. He represented P G & E with a presence not felt
    by many people these days. He truly loved his work, his job and his
    community and you could tell that whenever you heard him talk. And, I hate
    to point out that P G & E is not loved by everyone in this community, yet
    everyone who knew John loved him…he is a spokesperson I don’t think you
    should give up. He gave P G & E a human heart.

    I understand that business is business, but I feel you really need to
    reconsider the greater parameter that John brings your company.

  4. Connie from Los Osos
    September 27, 2007 at 6:37 pm

    I’m writing to protest the recent PG&E lay-off of meteorologist John Lindsey. I feel that he is the best possible representative for your corporation on the Central Coast. I realize many people in this area haven’t welcomed the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant with open arms (to put it mildly), but if anyone has created good will toward the facility, it is John Lindsey. The community loves him!

    I always depend on his Friday morning forecast on KVEC Radio before working on the weekends as a tour guide at Hearst Castle. I know for certain I can count on John to tell me whether to wear shorts or a sweater or maybe a rain coat.

    The most important concern I have is his role in keeping the Central Coast safe. What if an earthquake hit on one of the many faults nearby? What if there were a tsunami? We need this professional to warn and guide the community and your power plant through such a worst case scenario.

    With some of our Pacific Ocean buoys no longer working, Mr. Lindsey’s e-mail forecasts can be a life-and-death service to our local fishing fleet. Perhaps this service has been automated and a human being is no longer needed. I don’t know. But I can tell you a human being such as Mr. Lindsey is absolutely needed by PG&E if for no other reason than the positive public relations he creates.

    Please reconsider this cut. The value to our community of Mr. Lindsey on the job is priceless. He is so much more than a number on a spread sheet.

  5. Greg Wynn-SLO
    September 28, 2007 at 12:58 am

    Dear Mr. Morrow-

    I am saddened to hear that John Lindsey is no longer employed by PG&E and more importantly, that John is no longer your local ambassador to San Luis Obispo County. I have been a fan of John’s radio weather since he began to share his knowledge with the community. It was always my belief that John had the full support of PG&E and that in fact PG&E recognized the goodwill that was generated by having a representative that we respected and felt was a part of our community. Clearly, someone at PG&E has misjudged a fantastic opportunity.

    As our electric utility monopoly, you don’t have to listen to the voice of the community you serve, but I hope you recognize that many of us see John Lindsey as integral to the power you generate. That power to create a sense of community, the power of your people, and the goodwill that comes from that power is now lost.

    If I made a mistake in my business and was shown the error of my ways as I am sure you have been, I would make every effort to right that wrong. I agree with our local radio host that if I were the CEO of PG&E, I would send John Lindsey to every Rotary meeting, to every school, every career day and festival. PG&E has never had a better spokesperson.

    I hope you see the light.

    Greg Wynn


    San Luis Obispo, CA

  6. business man
    September 28, 2007 at 1:48 am

    What you are all missing is the main point. PG&E is a “for profit” corporation. It decides what is in it’s best interest and the interests of the stock holders. It business, plain and simple. This is not europe where you are guaranteed a job for life. Here companies hire and fire at will, as any of you would if you owned your own business.

    Is John a nice guy? Unquestionably. Should a for profit company keep John on the payroll because he is a nice guy…not a chance.

    Investors want to see a return on profit and want costs handled if revenues are down. At that point you look at vital and nonvital sertvices and make cuts where they hurt the least.

    If you want to be angry that John is being fired…be mad as hell at the muslim terrorists that ruined the American way of life on 9-11. That terrorist attack has forced comapinies like PG&E to spend millions on security to guard a nuclear facility from being the target of yet another muslim attack! That and only that should anger or sadden you.

    Ask anyone that works at Diablo Canyon how much security has been added in the past 5 years! Ask em! Ask em about the yellow pathways that are the only places you can walk on the property. Ask them about the added security just to get to your job and the time it takes to through all the screening.

    Then you will understand why this cut had to be made.

    Or ask the mothers for peacniks that have cost them untold millions in law suits. That money has to come from somewhere, or would you rather have your energy bills doubled?

    Lament all you like. That will not change reality. Radical islam has changed our way of life…and our brave military and our President are trying to make your future safer, and bring freedom to oppressed parts of the world. Give us time to win this war on terror and then we can bring John back.

    Until then remeber this. They attacked us, and we will defend ourselves and our friends that love freedom all over the planet.
    Islam must be stopped for the sake of John’s all over the country.

    Good luck John. You will be in my prayers

  7. Peter F
    September 28, 2007 at 3:14 am

    Why not hire John at KVEC and now he’s free to speak the truth.

  8. Anonymous
    September 28, 2007 at 3:58 am

    I work with John and totally agree with everything that’s been said about him. Along with John, we lost some excellent people this week with more to come. You CANNOT replace quality people & experience with procedures or processes.
    The new VP is from the Eastern US and wants DCPP “headcount” to benchmark (correlate) with other nuclear power plants in the US. In return, this looks good (top quartile rating) and allows the people in charge to get big bonuses (corporate America, who cares about the people or families).
    Regarding why DCPP needs a weather forecaster, here’s some facts for the community to ponder regarding this benchmarking:
    1) John provides weather predictions which allow the plant to control it’s intake of seawater for cooling. Waves and storms clog up the intake structure with debris and kelp. We staffed and prepared for those conditions with John’s data.
    2)There are approx 103 reactors run by 27 companies in the US. Most companies have multiple sites which allows for centralized management & resources (less people) and not similar to DCPP.
    3) Less than half of those companies run single site reactors for comparison with DCPP.
    4) Of those, less than 4 are located on an ocean and need to be concerned about sea conditions.
    5) On the west coast, San Onofre and DCPP are the only ones on the coastline. Do you think San Onofre has to be concerned about weather??
    6) Now here’s the best part: San Onofre has almost 2800 permanent staff and DCPP has about 1300.

    The DCPP headcount goal is based on a study that “says” DCPP should be down around 900 people to benchmark in the top quartile compared to all the other 103 reactors (see 1-6 above).
    I know a lot of people who work for these conglomerates back east and most people are working 60-70 hours a week (salary). They are overworked & burnt out; but they have kids to put through college and mortgage payments.

    Some other things to ponder are:
    A) DCPP has already lost a lot of excellent personnel and experience due to retirement. I’d say we will loose another 30 to 40 percent of these experienced people in the next 5-10 years. Remember we all started working there around 1984 when the reactors went “on-line”.
    B) Very few people can afford to move to SLO so it will be hard to replace experienced people in the future.
    C) DCPP needs to be staffing extra people NOW for turnover and training the next DCPP generation.
    D) DCPP is going to have four of it’s biggest projects since initial construction in the next two years. Those projects are: replacing the site computer software which runs everything (Nexus/SAP), Steam Generator replacements on both reactors, reactor vessel head replacement on both reactors, and spent fuel storage.

    Nuclear power can be a great thing for energy independence. HOWEVER, it is also something to be taken very seriously by quality people who are not overworked.

    John is one example of what I see coming on the horizon.

    The public needs to ask themselves if they want to save $2.00 on their energy bill or demand that PG&E staff it’s nuclear power plant with quality people that are not overworked or understaffed to meet the challenges in the next 10 years?

  9. Diane from Nipomo
    September 28, 2007 at 4:08 am

    I have been listening and reading with interest and dismay at the layoff of John Lindsey (Diablo PG & E meteorologist). While I can appreciate and understand as a stockholder the value of streamlining operations more efficiently, I would suggest that John Lindsey serves a much broader role for your company. For the record, I do not personally know John Lindsey or any of his family.

    I do use the national weather service for many reasons, but since I started listening to John Lindsey’s weather forecasts, I rely on his weather as my most reliable source. It is invaluable to farmers and fishermen, but also many others. Should PG & E add weather forecasting to its services or is that enough to keep John in your employ? Perhaps not. But as a neighbor to all of us and in the spirit of community and goodwill, John Lindsey is one of your few treasures.

    I am sure you will hear many stories of how John and his role at PG & E has touched many lives, but the main reason you should keep John in your employ is one of common sense and good business. Superior public relations is an important part of any publicly traded company.

    I have lived here 12 years and have never seen more people dismayed over the layoff of one individual in my life. I hope you and your staff will reconsider John’s future at Diablo Canyon and that as a corporation you will weigh the benefit one person makes in the lives of so many. Who knew an energy company could have this kind of impact on local communities.

    Instead of making this story a weakness, you should use it as an opportunity to make it one of your strengths. You have a great opportunity here for a positive story and outcome.

  10. John in Avila
    September 28, 2007 at 3:33 pm

    Gentlemen: I am a member of the Avila Valley Advisory Committee, Civic Assn, Business Assn., long time resident of Avila Beach, and an vineyard & winery owner in Avila Valley. We regularly deal with PG&E issues at most of these civic groups especially AVAC and John Lindsey is your greatest public relations asset. He is the local face of your company. John is the best advocate for nuclear power you could ever have because of his honesty, sincerity, and friendly manner. I have heard John reason why we need nuclear power in such clear and informative ways that your PR department can only dream of because they do not have John Lindsey’s trust with the public. I also may be a little self-serving because I rely daily on John’s forecasts for my vineyard operation just over the hill from Diablo Canyon. His reach goes way beyond your company in the community by providing accurate local weather information for construction, tourism, agriculture, etc. How can you really think that John’s weather reports from PG&E several times a week are not the best PR your company could ever ask for and have no value? You are literally “cutting off your nose to spite your face”. Please, reconsider John’s future with your company. Thanks,

  11. Elizabeth
    September 28, 2007 at 6:34 pm

    I was/am SHOCKED to hear of John’s firing. What a waste and what a foolish thing to do!
    We are avid fishermen and my husband is a carpenter.We rely on his accurate forecasts on a regular basis, for work and for play.
    We concur with all other comments which have been posted here as well.
    We SINCERELY hope to hear the good news that John will be reinstated, and SOON!! The “Mayor of Pozo”,Elizabeth Fadeley

  12. Power Elite
    September 28, 2007 at 10:14 pm

    Wow! Truly amazing, bonehead move by PG&E. I know John from soccer games (his daughter is an ace) and the managment brass have no idea how far this man spreads good will for them.

    As for the issue of PG&E having to cut costs, add security and be responsible to their shareholders it makes one wonder where else they are cutting corners? If they are truly a private company then why does the US government subsidize them with billions of dollars? I’d like that deal for my company.

  13. Anonymous
    September 28, 2007 at 10:23 pm

    As a commercial fisherman, i will sorely miss john’s forecasts….i feel like somebody stole my favorite and most used tool in my toolchest….noaa (know a nothing) forecasts for this area suck…if you are 40 miles offshore and cruising, i guess noaa might guess right…but for the coast off the irish hills, john’s forecast was paramount.

    i will definitly call , write, or e-mail everybody i think could help get his position reinstated……i’ll also urge the port san luis commercial fishermans assn. and harbor commissioners to do the same…heck, if that doesn’t work, mayby a rock wraped in a note will get somebodies attention.

    pg&e has taken enough from this fishing community…not only do they chase away anyone within a mile of them, but they’ve been killing billions and billions of rockfish larvea for many years now…i think keeping john’s position isn’t too much to ask in return.

    this is something we just can’t stand for, john costello

  14. Thomas W
    September 29, 2007 at 12:17 am

    Dear Mr Morrow;
    Let me add my voice to the many others that, by now, have written you concerning Mr. Lindsey’s layoff from PG&E.
    I have had the distinct privilege of working with him and relying on his weather reports to do Traffic and Weather for Radio Station KVEC. It’s been a real pleasure to have someone so knowledgeable and well informed about current sea and weather conditions in our area. I never failed to give credit to your corporation in my weather reports as his forecasts were invariably more accurate than the U.S, weather service. I always indicated that these weather forecasts were furnished through the cooperation of PG&E. So your company received free advertising every day on the number one talk radio station on the central coast. I just retired six weeks ago, but I understand that my compatriot, Matt Donavon, also was giving the company a plug when he does the weather. I’m sure you understand the cost of advertising and how much these weather reports reflect on the image of your corporation. I think the decision to do away with John’s position was ill advised, nor was it cost effective. I’m also sure that the gentleman that decided to do this was not aware of just how much good will John was doing for your local plant. I think that if he had been he never would have done away with that post.
    I am hoping that you will reconsider this decision of one of your employees and have Mr Lindsey’s position reinstated as it goes to the best interest of your corporation.
    .Tom Madsen
    Former traffic and weather for KVECagy

  15. corporate realist
    September 29, 2007 at 1:55 am

    God blessw you all for a valliant effort…but you don’t have a clue about PG&E.
    A few emails will not turn around a decision that may have been in the works for 6-8 months.
    Relax and reminisce about the good old days. John is long gone and nothing will change that.
    Have a great weekend at weather.com

  16. Anonymous
    September 29, 2007 at 5:37 am

    I have been a long time surfer along the Central coast for
    over 25 years and unfortunately my business consumes a lot
    of electricity. My electric bills can reach over $3000 a month.

    The reason why the PG&E wave forecasts is so renowned, its simply
    the best wave forecast anywhere! The National Weather service,
    Suefline, Wetsand and every other forecast service dose not compare.

    There is always a chance that PG&E is going trip units during
    a big wave event. Can you imagine what the outcry for the general
    public is going to be if this happens after all of this?

    A friend who works at Diablo Canyon told me that it cost ratepayers
    millions of dollars a day for replacement power when Diablo is off line.
    Add the extra cost of possible damage to the power plant and the increase
    oversight by the NRC-It all makes little since that PG&E would take
    this risk. For what, to layoff one guy?

    As a ratepayer, I should not have to pay extra on my electric bill because
    of poor management decisions during a big wave event, it’s completely
    unfair, Plase keep you wave forecast guy.


  17. skeptic
    September 29, 2007 at 3:19 pm

    I have a question…Why don’t all of you that liked John so much start to take up a collection to hire him to keep up his great community work?
    If 1000 of you donated $105 a month he could keep his $126,000 salary. I’m sure that KVEC would allow him to volunteer his time on the station so you keep getting his great forecats.
    Really! Why not put your money where your mouths are? Or do you just think that Americans coporations should cater to your every whim?
    Who wants to champion this cause? Who will step forward and help this man make $126,000+ per year in donations?
    I tell ya what, after you collect the first $125,900 I’ll throw in the last $100 bucks. OK? Who’s game? Or do you just like to bitch & moan?

  18. Dave Congalton
    September 29, 2007 at 3:59 pm

    Mr, Skeptic launches the weakest argument I’ve seen on this blog in a long time.

    First, john doesn’t make anywhere near $125,000 per year. He doesn’t even make half of that. He’s down pretty low on the PG&E payscale.

    Second, this doesn’t require anyone putting their money where they mouths are. It only requires good people to do the right thing — make their voices heard through emails and phone calls.

    As i announced on the radio yesterday, PG&E sent a rep over to talk to us at KVEC. They have been inundated by people and they have gotten the message about John. I remain cautiously hopeful, not in the least skeptical.

  19. Anonymous
    September 30, 2007 at 2:57 am

    Another long time central coast fisherman here.

    This could be a case of short term memory. I’ve notice that we have had a couple of years of calm weather out on the ocean. Hey, they may think that this pattern will continue.

    John Lindsey was the best forecaster I have even know. Can say for sure that he has saved a number of fisherman out on the water. What a lost to the central coast and to PG&E.

  20. Anonymous
    September 30, 2007 at 9:25 pm

    To Dave:

    I would like to express my concerns for Mr. John Lindsey. A recent Tribune article (Sep 27 2007) Pete Resler cites Mr. Lindsey position as “peripheral to the operation of the plant” I found this statement to downsize his integrity and worth. I am a local surfer and waterman. I utilize Mr. Lindsey’s expert weather posts to promote my choices in local outdoor activities. I have used other weather services and they typically hype up and miss wave events. The Diablo Canyon weather report is right on target. I would gladly pay $30 in addition to my monthly service to PG& E to keep this going.
    My retired neighbor subscribes to the Diablo Canyon Forecast, this service has comforted her in knowing the big forbidding monster on the other side of the Irish Hills is operating safely. For the sake of the ocean going community please save this service.


    Henry Danielson
    Los Osos, Ca.

  21. hitler's lil blog
    September 30, 2007 at 10:21 pm

    dont ever disagree with dave’s agenda or your comments will not get posted…even if it’s not a personal attack. If you dont agree with what dave wants to accomplish you will tossed asside.
    so very typical of spoiled lil liberals.
    sad, very sad

  22. Dave Congalton
    September 30, 2007 at 11:52 pm

    OK, Hitler — you can sleep comfortably tonight in your cave because I posted your comment just to let you prove a point.

    Once again, I repeat publicly: I will never censor or deny your posting simply because I disagree with you. But if you cross the line on personal attacks (as this guy has done before), I will not accept it.

    Which begs the questions for Mr. Hitler: What keeps you from developing an ability to argue without resorting to cheap, personal attacks?

    Very sad.

    Let’s move on.

  23. PG&E Worker
    October 1, 2007 at 2:51 am

    About 2 weeks ago Peter Darbe had a televised meeting with all of PG&E.
    In that meeting Peter was passionate about putting a face of integrity and community service on PG&E.
    As a matter of fact, I think his exact words were “I want the community to see a PG&E worker and say, that’s a great company”.

    Well, Peter, show us how it’s done. Be a leader ??????????????

  24. Billy D.
    October 2, 2007 at 2:09 am

    sorry dave but john L is gone but as you and others make it sound he died its ok he will do fine.there are other places to find forecasts and surf reports what about the other 25 people that got fired and the nezt 26 they have a life a family what they dont count or there knot YOUR FREINDS its all to bad my self im self imp. good luck john I hope you can stay here

  25. Dave Congalton
    October 2, 2007 at 3:30 am


    No one is saying John is more important than anyone else laid off at Diablo Canyon. He himself addressed that in his essay in last week’s Tribune.

    But because of his job, John is the one who is affecting so many of us. That’s why there have been hundreds and hundreds of phone calls and letters on his behalf. I didn’t do that. It’s been a natural outpouring from the people.

    PG&E has undervalued his contribution to the community. I would like to think we have the right to try and change their minds.

  26. Ted in Los Osos
    October 2, 2007 at 5:31 am

    After all the PR and hard work PG&E has done to build confidence and trust
    in their ailing nuclear power plant, they have cut one of the most important
    public safety programs they have ever created.

    John Lindsey’s Diablo Canyon swell, ocean and weather report has been a life
    saver for the county. Unknowingly, the Diablo report became a life line to
    mariners, surfers and beachgoers alike. The report gave the boaters a heads
    up for dangerous seas as well as to when to batten down the hatches.
    Surfers knew when the waters were too rough or when it was not worth the
    drive. Personally, the report has saved me hundreds of gallons of gas. Just
    imagine how much energy it has saved the community. I speak on behalf of a
    large surfing/boating community of the Central Coast.

    I believe PG&E should examine what a great service and public relations
    image John Lindsey had provided. To slash such a service to the community
    and energy saving would only reconfirm the mistrust of Diablo’s blunders.

    To merely reinstate Mr. Lindsey would be a insult. PG&E should promote him
    for his efforts and community service.

  27. trish
    October 7, 2007 at 5:09 pm

    Thank you to everyone who wrote letters and made phone calls on my husband’s behalf. John and I appreciate your support and feel fortunate to live in such a caring community.

  28. Anonymous
    October 10, 2007 at 2:30 am

    A lot of rumors are floating around right now. supposedly,
    Dave is going to make a big announcement on Wednesday. Lets
    hope for the best.

  29. Anonymous
    October 11, 2007 at 5:32 pm

    Thank you Dave and PG&E! It will be good to get the weather again.

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