Home Local Maryland Government Announcement Originally published December 03, 2013

BGE Launches Wires Down Video Challenge Online Voting Phase and Encourages Public to View and Vote for Favorite Submissions

BGE Launches Wires Down Video Challenge Online Voting Phase and Encourages Public to View and Vote

for Favorite Submissions

More than 20 elementary schools from across BGE’s service area created renditions of BGE’s original ‘Wires Down’ television

commercial for a chance to win up to $10,000 to fund a school enrichment project and promote electric safety among students


BALTIMOREDec. 3, 2013 – In an effort to promote electric safety among school-age children across central Maryland, Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) created the BGE Wires Down Video Challenge to educate children about safety around electrical equipment and the dangers associated with downed power lines. The Challenge, which allows for elementary schools in its service area to create their own renditions of BGE’s "Wires Down" television commercial for a chance to win up to $10,000 to fund a school enrichment project, is now in the online voting phase and the company encourages the public to visit to view and vote for their favorite submissions.  More than 20 videos from 22 elementary schools from across BGE’s central Maryland service area were submitted this year.

“As safety is a top priority at BGE, we are excited to see the creative entries in the Wires Down Video Challenge and we invite our customers to visit to view the videos and vote for their favorite,” said Christie McMullen, vice president and chief safety officer for BGE. “We especially encourage parents to share the videos with their families, as it provides an excellent opportunity to continue to educate children about the importance of electric safety.  The original ‘Wires Down’ commercial was an important way for BGE to educate customers about the dangers associated with downed power lines, especially children who may be unaware of the safety hazards.”

Video submissions were accepted online from Sept. 9 through Nov. 22. Online voting opened on Nov. 25 and continues through Dec. 8. The videos with the highest overall number of votes, along with up to five merit-based videos, will advance to the final judging phase. Winning schools will be announced in January 2014.

About the BGE Wires Down Video Challenge

Open to all public and private elementary schools in BGE’s central Maryland service area, local schools were encouraged to create their own adaption of BGE’s popular “Wires Down” electric safety commercial. Originally produced in 2000, the Emmy Award-winning commercial with its “do not, do not, do not touch” refrain helped to raise awareness of electricity hazards, especially among young children.Participating schools created a 30- to 45-second video, based on BGE’s original “Wires Down” commercial.

In addition to the team-building and artistic qualities the video challenge provides, educators can also download educational material on gas and electric safety, including classroom lessons, teacher guides, experiments and games through BGE’s e-Smart Kids website.

Customers are always reminded to stay away from downed power lines and to report them immediately by calling 1.800.685.0123.  Customers are encouraged to review and share the following electrical safety information with their families:

·         Assume that all overhead wires are energized at lethal voltages. Never assume that a wire is safe to touch even if it is down, appears to be insulated or if power is out at nearby premises.

·         Never touch a fallen overhead power line. Call BGE to report fallen electrical lines.

·         Stay at least 10 feet away from overhead wires during cleanup and other activities.

·         If working at heights or handling long objects, survey the area before starting work for the presence of overhead wires.

·         Likewise, avoid touching anything that may be coming into contact with an overhead wire, like tree limbs or other debris.

·         If an overhead wire falls across your vehicle while you are driving, stay inside the vehicle and continue to drive away from the line. If the engine stalls, do not leave your vehicle. Warn people not to touch the vehicle or the wire. Call or ask someone to call emergency services.

·         Never operate electrical equipment while you are standing in water.

·         Never repair electrical cords or equipment unless qualified and authorized.

·         Have a qualified electrician inspect electrical equipment that has gotten wet before energizing it.

·         If working in damp locations, inspect electric cords and equipment to ensure that they are in good condition and free of defects, and use a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).

·         Always use caution when working near electricity.

For more information on wires down and electric safety, visit