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Pepco Continues Full Damage Assessment

Pepco Crews to Work Cautiously in View of Hazardous Weather Conditions

WASHINGTON - A combination of heavy wet snow, wind and lightning that ripped through the Washington Metropolitan Region has caused a large number of power outages. Pepco monitored weather conditions and prepositioned crews at our Rockville and Forestville Service Centers in anticipation of power outages. However, due to the severity of the weather and hazardous road conditions that included abandoned vehicles, crews have had difficulty navigating the roads and assessing storm damage to restore service. These conditions also prevent Pepco from being able to offer estimated times of restoration, but where conditions permit, crews are working and restoring power as quickly and as safely as possible.

Pepco has requested and will receive out-of-state assistance tomorrow.

Pepco continues to work with the District of Columbia, and Montgomery and Prince George's counties for assistance in accessing the major outages. Pepco will also coordinate its power restoration efforts with emergency management personnel and local government officials.

Pepco recognizes the inconvenience this storm has caused and understands how difficult it is especially with the cold temperatures. The company appreciates the patience of our customers and community leaders as we work together to recover from this storm.

Additional customer service representatives have been added, however we continue to ask that our customers call 1-877-PEPCO-62 or -877-737-2662 for outages and to report downed wires.

Pepco's automated outage reporting system is the most effective way to report an outage because it immediately feeds information into computers that rapidly identify problem areas and dispatch repair crews, so that power can be restored as quickly as possible.

Once the storm subsides, crews will survey the electric system to assess the damage. As with plowing roads, it is not possible to clear side streets before the main roads are cleared. To that end, in the event our system is damaged by severe weather, Pepco repairs equipment that will restore the largest numbers of customers first. Generally, the power restoration sequence is as follows:

  • Downed live wires or potentially life-threatening situations and public health and safety facilities without power
  • Transmission lines serving thousands of customers
  • Substation equipment
  • Main distribution lines serving large numbers of customers
  • Secondary lines serving neighborhoods
  • Service lines to individual homes and businesses

Pepco urges customers to stay safe and be prepared. Here are some additional tips:

  • Assemble an emergency storm kit. Include a battery-powered radio or television, flashlight, first-aid kit, battery-powered or windup clock, extra batteries, non-perishable food, manual can opener, bottled water, any necessary medications and a list of emergency phone numbers.
  • Maintain a supply of extra blankets.
  • Ensure that all household members have a warm coat, gloves, hat and water-resistant boots.
  • Make sure your home has a telephone with a cord or cell phone to use as a backup. Cordless telephones require electricity to operate, and won't work if there is an outage.
  • Identify a place for emergency shelter in case of an extended outage. It is important that customers with special needs or their caregivers take responsibility to make arrangements ahead of time to prepare for potentially long-lasting service interruptions.

Additional information may be found at 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 778,000 customers in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

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