For Immediate Release
BALTIMORE (May 28, 2018) – BGE gas and electric crews continue to assess system damage and are coordinating with state and local emergency personnel in the aftermath of yesterday's severe weather and flooding in Ellicott City, Catonsville, Arbutus and Baltimore City. Torrential rains and flash flooding damaged buildings and roads, leading to a state of emergency being declared by Governor Larry Hogan. Gas and electric service in the Main Street area of Ellicott City has been turned off as a safety precaution in coordination with emergency responders. In areas where heavy flooding occurred and infrastructure and buildings sustained severe damage, there will likely be extended outages of electric and gas service until infrastructure can be fully inspected and in some cases rebuilt.
BGE's Mobile Operations Command Center has been deployed to downtown Ellicott City in order to establish a presence in the community and to coordinate electric and gas resources. Approximately 450 electric customers and 270 gas customers remain without service in downtown Ellicott City. Additionally, pockets of flood damage in southwestern Baltimore County and Baltimore City along the Frederick Road corridor have had gas and electric service temporarily suspended until property owners are able to have equipment inspected and restored when safe.
The time it takes to restore gas service depends on the amount of damage to gas mains and the extent of any necessary repairs. After flooding, repairs are subject to water receding and the time it takes to pump all water and debris from gas pipes. Additionally, the restoration timeframe is influenced by how long it takes to access all affected customer properties and disconnect service to gas meters.
Once all meters have been disconnected and the gas mains are repaired and purged, BGE can begin the process of introducing gas back to the mains and restoring gas service to individual customers. This again requires a gas mechanic to access the meter to restore service and relight gas appliances. However, gas service cannot be restored if water has entered a customer's piping and appliances. Customer-owned equipment such as piping and gas-fed appliances located after the gas meter must be inspected and repaired by the customer's licensed plumber before BGE can fully restore service.
BGE asks all customers, including those with smart meters, to report their outage from a safe location. Outages may be reported online at BGE.com and via BGE's free mobile app available at the Apple Store or Google Play. Customers may also report outages and downed wires by calling 877-778-2222, on BGE.com and through mobile devices. To sign up for email and text notifications, visit BGE.com/alerts. Proceed with care and stay clear of water if you have experienced flooding in your basement, if you have submerged gas or electric meters or if water has impacted electrical outlets. As always, any natural gas odors or gas safety concerns should be immediately reported to BGE from a safe location by calling 800-685-0123. BGE will respond 24-7 to investigate and make the area safe.
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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 power delivery to more than 1.25 million electric customers and more than 650,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland, as well as enhanced energy management, conservation, environmental stewardship and community assistance. J.D. Power's 2017 Electric Utility Business Customer Satisfaction StudySM ranked BGE highest in customer satisfaction with business electric service in the east among large utilities. The company also has an estimated annual economic impact of $5 billion of output in its service area, supporting more than 9,500 local jobs and producing $923 million in labor income. BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation's leading competitive energy provider. Like us onFacebook and follow us onTwitter, YouTube andFlickr.