For Immediate Release
BALTIMORE (March 8, 2016) – Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) will inspect approximately 38,500 wooden utility poles this year as part of the company’s ongoing commitment to maintaining a safe and reliable electric distribution system. The inspections are part of the company’s routine preventive maintenance program.
“Our customers expect safe and reliable service from BGE and a key part of delivering on that commitment is rigorous inspection of our equipment to ensure that power is delivered to our customers when and where they need it,” said Derrick Dickens, BGE’s vice president of Technical Services. “Our preventive maintenance programs cover not only utility poles, but every component of our electric and natural gas distribution systems. Every link in the chain can be critical to overall high performance.”
Each year, BGE invests close to $500 million to operate and maintain the company’s electric system infrastructure. The pole inspection program is part of the company’s overall preventive maintenance program which also includes regular inspection of manholes, overhead wires, underground cables, transformers, substations and other equipment.
All poles will be visually examined with some requiring additional material sampling and excavation around the base to check for decay. When necessary, poles will be treated to discourage insect encroachment. Some poles will be repaired or replaced in order to promote future electric reliability and public safety. Inspection, replacement and repair work is done in accordance with the National Electrical Safety Code.
The program is designed to add years of service to poles, which helps control costs while improving the safety and reliability of the system. This year, BGE is inspecting poles in parts of Howard County and Montgomery County. 2017 inspections will occur in Baltimore City, Baltimore County and Howard County. Anne Arundel and Prince George’s County poles were inspected in 2014 and 2015. In total, BGE maintains approximately 380,000 poles, all of which are inspected every 10 years.
Since 2006, the number of total electric outages has decreased 43 percent, and electric outage length has been reduced by 38 percent. BGE continually invests in its infrastructure, including more than $6 billion in system upgrades since 2002, which is expected to lead to fewer outages and faster restoration when outages do occur.
BGE, headquartered in Baltimore, is Maryland’s largest natural gas and electric utility, delivering power to more than 1.25 million electric customers and more than 650,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland. The company’s approximately 3,200 employees are committed to the safe and reliable delivery of natural gas and electricity, as well as enhanced energy management, conservation, environmental stewardship and community assistance. BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation’s leading competitive energy provider, with 2014 revenues of approximately $27.4 billion. Like us on
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