BGE continues to make progress restoring service to smaller groups of customers
Customers are urged to prepare today for possible additional outages related to forecasted storm system
BALTIMORE, July 4, 2012 – Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) today announced that it has restored electric service to nearly 90 percent of the more than 700,000 customers affected since Friday’s severe weather system and is aggressively working to restore service to the remaining customers. Due to widespread, massive damage requiring extensive and significantly lengthy repairs, BGE expects restoration to continue through the weekend. The company also continues to monitor and plan for the potential of additional storm activity tonight.
“We understand that the extensive restoration effort that has occurred thus far is of little comfort to those who continue to experience extended outages,” said Stephen J. Woerner, BGE senior vice president and chief operating officer. “BGE has more than 4,200 field and support forces working through this Fourth of July holiday and they will continue to work as long as it takes until each and every customer is restored. For further insight into BGE’s restoration process and the work our crews are doing in the field, we encourage customers to visit our You Tube channel and to continue to stay informed of our progress via bge.com, Twitter, Facebook and Flickr.”
As the restoration effort continues, BGE has updated its website to reflect some of the general areas where crews are or will be making repairs today. In limited instances, BGE is also working to provide customers with restoration estimates in situations where the company has identified the problem and has high confidence that repairs can be completed within a certain timeframe. Customers should also be aware that additional storms have been forecasted for today. These may potentially affect BGE’s restoration efforts, as certain weather conditions like high winds limit the use of equipment such as bucket trucks and bring on new outages.
“BGE is monitoring the weather and making preparations for possible storm activity forecasted for later today,” said Woerner. “We will continue to staff our customer contact center at increased levels to efficiently handle customer calls relating to extended outages since Friday’s severe weather system, as well any new outages that may be reported as a result of today’s potential storm activity. Customers should note that restoration of any new outages that may occur may be delayed as restoration resulting from Friday’s storm remains our top priority.”
BGE continues to make steady progress in restoring electricity to the secondary lines that service smaller groups of customers. This approach is in line with industry standards, which focus first on public safety and critical infrastructure issues, followed by work that will restore the largest number of customers at once.
As crews move deeper into neighborhoods, restoration work often becomes much more complex. It’s possible that following the completion of initial repairs, crews will learn of additional problems affecting an individual residence or business, which can hamper restoration. To help ensure that repairs are made as efficiently as possible as well as gain further insight into the type of damage in the area, BGE may call customers to inquire whether their power has returned.
While the number of public safety issues continue to decline significantly, the dangers relating to downed wires remains very real. BGE urges customers to stay away from downed power lines and to report them immediately by calling 1-877-778-2222.
BGE continues to request and secure additional resources to aid in this monumental restoration effort. In all, approximately 1,300 utility workers have come from New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Michigan, Massachusetts, Florida and Canada. BGE’s sister utility, PECO, an Exelon Company based in Philadelphia, is also providing support to the company’s restoration effort.
As part of BGE’s restoration efforts, crews are operating in “pods,” meaning crews with different skill sets travel together for jobs that require complex work. In so doing, each crew begins its work as soon as the crew before them has completed their part of the job, resulting in the most efficient approach to restoration.
As a reminder, BGE customers who may be elderly, handicapped or dependent on electricity for medical equipment, should always have alternate arrangements in place should they experience an extended power outage. Customers using a generator should follow manufacturer instructions and be sure to locate generators in well-ventilated areas. For more information about BGE storm preparation and how customers can protect their families and property, go to bge.com
Customers should consider filling the fuel tanks of their vehicles in the event a power outage affects service to neighborhood gas stations. For customers who rely on well water, filling a bathtub with water in advance of severe weather is strongly encouraged.
BGE, headquartered in Baltimore, is Maryland’s largest gas and electric utility, delivering power to more than 1.2 million electric customers and more than 650,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland. The company’s approximately 3,400 employees are committed to the safe and reliable delivery of gas and electricity, as well as enhanced energy management, conservation, environmental stewardship and community assistance. BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation’s leading competitive energy provider with approximately $33 billion in annual revenues. Like us on Facebook
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