BALTIMORE (October 1, 2015) – Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) is monitoring Hurricane Joaquin, which some forecasts indicate could affect the mid-Atlantic region. BGE is making staffing preparations in order to respond to any potential service interruptions caused by the heavy rain and damaging winds of a major coastal storm. In addition to the company’s 3,200 employees, BGE is activating additional support contractors—tree and overhead line crews—and has begun the process of requesting crews from other utilities. The company also asks customers to make sure they have contingency plans and supplies prepared should they become necessary.
“We closely monitor all severe weather, and while the path of this storm continues to develop, BGE is taking steps to ensure we are prepared should it affect the central Maryland area,” said Rob Biagiotti, vice president and chief customer officer for BGE. “Just as we prepare, customers can also take steps to make sure they are ready too. We especially ask customers with special needs or who are dependent upon electricity for medical equipment to have alternate arrangements in place in the event they experience an extended power outage.”
Customers should report service interruptions or downed wires to BGE at 877.778.2222. BGE asks all customers, including those with smart meters, to report their outage. Outages may also be reported at BGE.com and through mobile devices. Customers can find information on preparing for natural disasters and other emergency events at the storm center on BGE.com, as well as storm preparation information and restoration progress via BGE’s social media sites Twitter and Facebook. We thank our customers in advance for taking the time to prepare their homes and families.
Should the storm affect central Maryland, BGE will work to keep customers updated through the company’s website, local media, social media channels.
Customers are reminded to have the following basic items on hand:
- Flashlights – not candles
- Fresh batteries
- Battery-operated clock radio
- Corded telephone
- Fully charged cell phone
- Non-perishable foods
- Water – one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days for drinking and sanitation
- First aid kit
- Local maps
In addition, customers 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. Customers using a generator should follow manufacturer instructions and be sure to locate generators outside, in well-ventilated areas.
In instances of long periods of heavy rain, BGE prepares for the very real potential of not only outages relating to overhead power lines, but also outages caused by flooding in cases where water enters gas and electric meters. In cases where flooding affects equipment after the meter, customers are responsible for all wiring, pipe, appliances, breaker boxes and any other gas or electric-related equipment or service inside the home or business.
Customers are urged to consider the following safety tips:
- Proceed with care if you have experienced flooding in your basement and/or other areas of your home
- Do not enter a room with standing water, particularly if the water covers electrical outlets or electrical cords that are plugged into outlets
- Ensure the electrical system is shut off before entering a flooded room or basement
- Do not attempt to shut off your electrical system if you have to stand in water or on a wet floor to do so
If you experienced flooding, do not turn on any lights or appliances without having a comprehensive inspection performed by a licensed electrician and also by a registered plumber with a gasfitter’s license for gas appliances.