Utility expects vast majority of remaining outages to be restored by late this evening
Heat-related outages may continue
BALTIMORE, June 10, 2011 – Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) today announced that it is aggressively working to restore electric service to customers following heavy thunderstorm which passed through its Central Maryland service area Thursday night. The utility expects electric service to the vast majority of customers affected by last night’s storm to be restored by this evening. However, due to the ongoing extremely hot weather, new outages could occur. BGE expects to have sufficient power to meet high demand and has adjusted staffing to help limit the duration of outages should they occur. Customers are reminded to stay informed on restoration efforts via www.bge.com, Twitter, Facebook and Flickr.
“BGE has been aggressively working to restore electric service following last night’s fast moving thunderstorm which knocked down trees and electric wires,” said A. Christopher Burton, senior vice president of gas and electric operations and planning for BGE. “While restoration efforts intensified following the storm, BGE has been responding very aggressively to heat-related outages throughout the week as extreme temperatures typically increase electric usage which may contribute to power outages. As always, BGE thanks its customers for their patience and understanding.”
Throughout this week’s heat wave, BGE proactively communicated with customers identified in its system as special needs, such as those who may be elderly, handicapped or dependent on electricity for medical equipment. Those customers should have alternate arrangements in place should they experience an extended power outage. Customers using a generator or space heater should follow manufacturer instructions and be sure to locate generators in well-ventilated areas.
Just as BGE prepares for severe weather and the possibility of power outages, customers should also be prepared and take steps to ensure the safety of their families and property during electric service interruptions. Customers should keep the following items readily available:
-Flashlights – not candles
-Battery operated clock radio
-Fully charged cell phone
Customers also 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's restoration priorities are public safety issues and critical facilities, such as 911 centers, hospitals and pumping stations. Then restoration is generally scheduled so that the greatest number of customers can be restored as quickly and as safely as possible. However, in cases of extended power outages, consideration is also given to customers who have been without service for the longest.
Customers are always reminded to stay away from downed power lines and to report them immediately by calling 1-410-685-0123. Power outages should be reported by calling BGE’s automated system at 1-877-778-2222. For more information about BGE storm preparation and how customers can protect their families and property, go to www.bge.com.
In addition to monitoring current and approaching weather conditions which could result in service interruptions, BGE regularly conducts emergency training drills during which all aspects of storm related service restoration are tested. BGE also reviews its Electric Delivery Emergency Response Plan to ensure that storm response procedures are up-to-date and in line with industry standards.
BGE, www.bge.com, headquartered in Baltimore, is Maryland’s largest gas and electric utility, delivering power to more than 1.2 million electric customers and more than 640,000 natural gas customers in Central Maryland. The company’s approximately 3,000 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 Constellation Energy, www.constellation.com, a FORTUNE 500 company also headquartered in Baltimore, with subsidiaries that generate, sell and provide other energy-related services to customers throughout North America.