For Immediate Release
BALTIMORE (March 4, 2018) – BGE is continuing to restore electric service to customers affected by a powerful nor'easter that began moving through central Maryland on Friday and continued to cause damage to trees and power equipment through Saturday. More than 435,000 outages occurred due to high sustained winds and gusts exceeding 70 miles per hour.
"We continue to thank our customers for their patience and understanding as our employees, joined by crews from other states and Canada, work to fully restore service interrupted by this destructive storm," said Rodney Oddoye, vice president of customer operations and chief customer officer for BGE. "We understand the difficulties our customers are facing and are working to safely restore power as quickly as possible."
Crews are working in around-the-clock shifts to restore service as safely and quickly as possible. The vast majority of customers are expected to be restored by tonight with final repairs to pockets of more heavily damaged areas continuing into mid-week. Specific restoration times will be available to customers through BGE's outage reporting channels as damage assessments are completed.
Power is expected to be restored to all public schools within BGE's service area this evening.
While outages continue to decrease, much of the remaining work on the system is extremely labor intensive and time consuming. Once completed, these jobs are likely to restore service to smaller groups of customers at a time – in many cases only a single customer.
Crews from BGE's Exelon sister utility ComEd in Illinois, as well as crews based in other states like Florida and Georgia have arrived and are assisting in the restoration effort. Additional crews from the Midwest and Canada will be arriving and will begin restoration work on Monday.
High winds limited the operation of bucket trucks used for overhead repairs and damaged trees must be removed from power lines before repairs can be completed, extending the duration of power restorations.
BGE asks all customers, including those with smart meters, to report their outage. 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.
Customers with special needs, such as those who may be elderly, disabled or dependent on electricity for medical equipment, should have alternate arrangements in place should they experience an extended power outage.
BGE's restoration priorities are public safety and critical care 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.
# # #
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 Study SM 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 on Facebook and follow us on Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.