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For Immediate Release

Contact

Tasha Jamerson

Tasha.Jamerson@bge.com

BGE Ready for Summer Heat and Storms

Customers are urged to prepare and also take advantage of Energy Savings Days 

BALTIMORE (May 15, 2019) – BGE is prepared to respond to extreme weather and urges customers to take steps now that can help protect their families and properties. Continued investments in electric system upgrades, new innovative technologies, and the company's dedicated employees have combined to reduce the average length of a service interruption by 50 minutes since 2012- but customers should still have a plan in place, especially during hurricane season, which runs June 1 through Nov. 30. 

Also beginning June 1, new standard offer service electric rates go into effect and residential customers who purchase their electricity from BGE will see a bill reduction of $10 a month over the previous year. Customers who purchase their electricity from BGE are paying less today for the energy supply portion of their bill than they did in 2007.  Customers are also using less energy today, thanks to energy efficiency programs and smart grid upgrades.

BGE's summer readiness system upgrades include installation of more durable poles and wiring, expanded options for rerouting service to decrease the number of customers affected by an outage, and automated equipment that responds to system damage allowing field personnel to be deployed to other areas where on-site work is required. This work is part of the approximately $1.1 billion BGE invested in the company's electric system operations and maintenance and through infrastructure improvements during 2018.

“BGE strives to emphasize innovation in every aspect of our business, to ensure we are prepared to meet the demands of extreme summer weather, and we also ask our customers to prepare for extreme weather situations,” said BGE President and Chief Operating Officer Steve Woerner. “We continue to invest in our system and train as a team, which helps us deliver the quality electric power that our customers expect and need in their daily lives, not just during the summer storm season, but year-round.”

In total, the company has invested over $9 billion in gas and electric infrastructure since 2002, which includes ongoing investments in natural gas pipes, utility poles, overhead power lines, underground cable and other equipment. System upgrades and expansions are expected to lead to fewer outages and faster restoration when outages occur.

As part of the Exelon family of companies, BGE can draw on resources from sister utilities Delmarva Power in Delaware, PECO in Pennsylvania, Atlantic City Electric in New Jersey, Pepco in Washington, D.C., and ComEd in Illinois to help with power restoration after major storms.

As BGE prepares, customers should prepare before severe weather events.  Connect with BGE for additional ways to report outages and get status updates:
    • Download BGE’s free mobile app at the Apple Store or Google Play.
    • Sign up for text, email and/or phone alerts at bge.com/alerts
    • Text “ADDOUTAGE” to MYBGE (69243), for two-way texting.
  • Store a supply of bottled water and easy-to-prepare, non-perishable foods.
  • Keep cell phones and mobile devices charged.
  • Customers with landlines should keep a corded phone to report outages if cell phones lose power.
  • Have a flashlight with fresh batteries on each floor of your home.
  • Customers requiring refrigeration for medication or electricity for medical equipment should have alternate arrangements in place in the event of an extended power outage.
  • Bookmark BGE’s enhanced outage map at bge.com/outagemap for general information on outages in BGE’s service area. 

BGE offers programs that can help customers save energy and money, especially during times of higher temperatures that often lead to higher energy usage. The BGE Smart Energy Savers Program® can help identify new ways to save energy, money and the environment. The program, which supports the EmPOWER Maryland Energy Efficiency Act, has provided $779 million in rebates and bill credits to BGE customers and helped customers save more than 3.8 million megawatt-hours of electricity. EmPOWER Maryland programs are funded by a charge on your electric bill. EmPOWER programs can help you reduce your electricity consumption and save you money. 

Customers can also save energy and lower their bills this summer by following a few simple tips:
  • Maintain your A/C system: Most warm weather energy expenses are directly related to cooling your home. Regular maintenance will keep your system running at peak efficiency.
  • Use MyAccount online tools: Track your energy usage in near-real time. Compare energy usage trends, measure energy-saving practices, and set alerts to know when usage is trending high.
  • Reduce hot water usage: Water heating accounts for about 18 percent of home energy consumption. Install faucet aerators and efficient flow showerheads and adjust your hot water heater to 120°F, or the low setting, to lower usage.
  • Manage your thermostat: Keep thermostats at a constant, comfortable level when at home. Raise the thermostat setting for days of extreme heat to save even more. Install a programmable thermostat to automatically adjust your home's temperature settings when you're away or sleeping. 
  • Close window shades and blinds: Sunlight passing through windows heats your home and makes your air conditioner work harder. Block this heat by closing your window shades and blinds. 
  • Conserve with lighting: Turn off unnecessary lights and use LEDs, which can save you about $80 in electricity costs over their life time.
  • Reduce kitchen heat: Cook outdoors on a grill when possible.
  • Keep the air moving: Run your ENERGY STAR® certified ceiling fan counterclockwise to produce downward airflow and a cooling effect.
  • Take advantage of Energy Savings Days:  Energy Savings Days occur when the demand for electricity is expected to be particularly high, typically on very hot summer weekdays when both homes and businesses are using higher amounts of electricity. You will be notified (via phone, email or text), usually the day before a BGE Energy Savings Day. Use less electricity between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. on an Energy Savings Day and earn bill credits! 

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BGE, founded in 1816 as the nation’s first gas utility and headquartered in Baltimore, is Maryland’s largest natural gas and electric utility. The company’s approximately 3,200 employees are committed to safe and reliable energy delivery to more than 1.25 million electric customers and more than 650,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland.  In the J.D. Power 2017 and 2018 Electric Utility Business Customer Satisfaction Study SM  BGE was ranked Highest in Customer Satisfaction with Business Electric Service in the East among Large Utilities. In addition, in the J.D. Power 2018 Gas Utility Business Customer Satisfaction Study SM   BGE received Best in Customer Satisfaction with Business Natural Gas Service in the East. BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation’s leading competitive energy provider. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube  and Flickr.

Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (or “BGE”) received the highest score in the East Large segment of the 2018 Electric Utility Business Customer Satisfaction Study and the East Region of the 2018 Gas Utility Business Customer Satisfaction Study of electric and gas utility customer satisfaction among business customers. Visit jdpower.com/awards





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