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Pepco Restoring Service Following Severe Storms

Outages Down by Nearly 50 Percent

Pepco crews made significant progress working through the night restoring power after a series of severe thunderstorms hit the area Wednesday. As of Thursday morning, the number of outages decreased to approximately 85,000, down from a peak of 160,000 Wednesday evening.

Pepco is bringing in crews from outside its service territory to aid in restoring the electric system which has been heavily damaged by trees and wind - blown debris. Pepco crews continue to assess the damage caused by yesterday's powerful thunderstorms. The damage assessment is essential in guiding the restoration effort. Preliminary reports indicate that power restoration will take multiple days and will extend well into the weekend.

When the system is damaged by severe weather, Pepco applies priorities that take into account public safety, community needs and the nature of the electric system. Crews work first to address potentially life-threatening situations such as downed wires and public health and safety facilities without power. The crews then work downstream, beginning with any problems with the transmission or large distribution lines and focus on restoring power in a sequence that gets service to the greatest number of customers as quickly and safely as possible.

Safety

Until power is restored, here are tips to keep you safe, protect your food, home and belongings:

  • Pepco strongly encourages customers to make safety a priority. Stay away from downed power lines. All downed lines should be treated as if they are energized, and individuals should not approach them or touch them.
  • To report downed wires and outages, customers are asked to call 1-877-PEPCO-62 (1-877-737-2662).
  • Keep away from flooded areas and stay indoors. If you experience a power outage, check for electrical damage inside your home, such as frayed wires, sparks or the smell of burning insulation. If you find damage, don't turn your power on until an electrician inspects your system and makes necessary repairs. Remember, electricity and water is a dangerous combination. Even wading in a shallow puddle or flooded basement that is exposed to an energized line could lead to harmful electrical contact.

Protecting Your Food

  • Keep freezer and refrigerator doors closed; open them only when absolutely necessary. Food will stay frozen for 36 - 48 hours in a fully loaded freezer if you keep the door closed.
  • A half-full freezer will generally keep food frozen for 24 hours.

Protecting Your Home and Belongings if Your Power is Out

  • Turn off all appliances, including your furnace, air conditioner, water heater, and water pump. That way, you can avoid a circuit overload and another outage that may result when power is restored to all appliances at once.
  • Leave on one lamp so you will know that the power has been restored.

It is Important to be Prepared
As part of our storm preparedness information, we encourage customers to always keep these items on hand:

  • Flashlights and fresh batteries
  • Battery-powered radio
  • Battery-powered or wind-up alarm clock
  • A supply of bottled water (1 gallon per person per day)
  • Non-perishable foods that require no heating
  • Blankets, bedding, or sleeping bags
  • First Aid Kit & medications
  • Hand-operated can opener
  • Special items for infants, the elderly or family members with special needs
  • Hand tools such as a screwdriver; scissors; duct tape; plastic; paper; waterproof matches; household bleach
  • Identification and copies of important family documents
  • Emergency Services and Pepco telephone numbers

It is recommended that these items be stored ahead of time in an "Emergency Go Kit" in order to save valuable time and to be prepared in the event of a wide variety of potential emergencies.

For more safety and emergency preparedness tips, log onto the Pepco Storm Center, www.pepco.com.

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Pepco, a subsidiary of Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), delivers safe, reliable and affordable electric service to more than 750,000 customers in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

© Potomac Electric Power Company, 2019. All Rights Reserved.