For Immediate Release
Tornadoes on June 1 and Microburst on June 22 Kick off Storm Season for Pepco
Pepco Encourages Customers to Review Plans, Check Supplies
WASHINGTON, D.C. - This year, the National Weather Service predicted a near-normal hurricane season for our region. Based on the period 1981-2010, an average season produces 12 named storms with six hurricanes, including three major hurricanes.
The first day of the 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season was anything but normal in the Washington Metropolitan Area. The National Weather Service has confirmed that severe thunderstorms produced 12 tornadoes throughout Maryland on Friday, June 1, including Montgomery and Prince George's counties.
Pepco reminds customers to prepare for the possibility of continued destructive tropical weather that could hit the region any time between now and Nov. 30. Seasonal thunderstorms such as the microburst with 90- to 100-mph winds that knocked out power to 45,000 Pepco customers June 22 also can occur during the summer.
The 2011 Atlantic hurricane season produced a total of 19 tropical storms, of which seven became hurricanes, including four major hurricanes. Irene was the lone hurricane to hit the United States in 2011.
" Hurricane Irene struck the Washington area with 65 mph winds, which downed trees and power lines and caused massive damage to Pepco's electric system infrastructure," said Thomas H. Graham, President, Pepco Region.
At its peak, the storm left 220,000 customers without power - 63,000 in Montgomery County, Md., 126,000 in Prince George's County, Md., and 31,000 in the District of Columbia
"Regardless of the outlook, it is vital to be prepared. We strongly encourage customers to take steps and be ready for any emergency," Graham said.
Visit www.pepco.com for additional preparation tips, and follow the advice of your local emergency management officials:
• Assemble an emergency storm kit, including:
o Battery-powered radio or television
o First-aid kit
o Battery-powered or windup clock
o Extra batteries
o Special needs items, such as an insulated cooler
o List of important and emergency phone numbers
• If you or someone you know uses life-support equipment that requires electricity to operate, identify a location with emergency power capabilities and make plans to go there.
• Keep at least a three-day supply per person of non-perishable foods and bottled water, as well as a hand-operated can opener.
• Have a telephone with a cord or a cell phone to use as a backup. Cordless telephones require electricity to operate and won't work if there is an outage.
• Protect your electronic equipment. Unplug sensitive electronics or plug computers and other sensitive equipment into surge suppressors and consider an uninterruptible power supply for temporary battery backup power.
• Turn off power to flood-prone basement appliances if it is safe to do so. However, if you have an electrically operated sump pump, you should not turn off your power.
• Have adequate prescription medicines or infant supplies on hand.
• Tune in to local news broadcasts for the latest weather and emergency information.
• If you use a personal generator, please take all recommended precautions.
• Take cover if necessary.
• Stay away from downed wires. Call 1-877-PEPCO-62 (1-877-737-2662), and follow the prompts to report a downed wire.
For more information and updates, visit www.pepco.com, follow us on Facebook and Twitter at PepcoConnect and download our mobile app at www.pepco.com/mobileapp.
Pepco, a subsidiary of Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), delivers safe, reliable and affordable electric service to more than 788,000 customers in Maryland and the District of Columbia.