Friday, September 14, 2012
But at a hearing with the PSC, the chief executive officer supported the utility's decision to withhold information from officials to protect customers' privacy.
The chief executive officer of BGE told the state’s utilities regulator on Thursday that the only way to shorten the length of major power outages would be to have a “very different delivery system,” the Baltimore Sun reports. BGE CEO Kenneth W. DeFontes Jr. was speaking at a Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) hearing, scheduled after more than 760,000 Maryland residents lost power in the wake of the late-June derecho storm. At the hearing, which is standard procedure after “major outage events,” DeFontes reportedly told regulators that BGE would need to bury some power lines–and more aggressively trim trees–to prevent more long-term outages. After June’s derecho, customers who lost power were in the dark for an average of 38 hours…
Friday, August 3, 2012
'It is important to note that no utility east of the Mississippi River could have anticipated the raw strength of this storm system.' BGE report.
The unpredictability of the June derecho was an important factor in the scope and length of power outages across BGE’s service area, according to a new report filed with the state. BGE filed its Major Outage Event Report with the Public Service Commission on July 30 as is required by Maryland law after a "major outage event." The derecho, which hit on June 29, left more than three quarters of a million Maryland customers in the dark – 62 percent of BGE’s customer base in Maryland. Focus on BGE's response intensified after a letter sent by Howard County Executive Ken Ulman and six other elected municipal heads. In it, they said BGE refused to give them specific outage information directly after the storm hit, and that the utility generally…
Friday, July 20, 2012
The increase will raise a household's monthly electricity bill by about $2, according to a statement issued by the Maryland Public Service Commission.
Of the $68 million rate increase requested by Pepco, the Maryland Public Service Commission has rejected $50 million. Still, the $18 million rate increase "translates into a $2.02 typical residential monthly bill impact" (a 1.69 percent increase), according to a statement issued by the Maryland Public Service Commission on Friday afternoon. In the rejection order, the commission "noted its overall dissatisfaction with Pepco’s performance, and characterized its request to increase returns to shareholders 'before Pepco corrects its sub-par performance' as 'backwards,' " according to the statement. Pepco filed the request on Dec. 16, 2011. "The full record in the case included testimony from 31 witnesses and 11 days of evidentiary hearings, …
The Public Service Commission will hear from residents across the state about their outages.
Maryland's utility regulator has scheduled hearings across the state to hear from residents about their experiences with the utilities during the powerful derecho storm that knocked out power to hundreds of thousands of residents. The Maryland Public Service Commission will hear testimony from Maryland residents in mid-August in locations including Towson, Frederick, Ellicott City and Baltimore. Residents who wish to submit written testimony may do so by Sept. 10. Mail comments to: David J. Collins, Executive Secretary, Maryland Public Service Commission, William Donald Schaefer Tower, 6 St. Paul Street, 16th Floor, Baltimore, Maryland 21202. In a July 10 letter to the PSC, officials said that utilities needed to improve performance, …
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
BGE and Pepco will reportedly be able to charge a fee for losses suffered when power was out to hundreds of thousands after the June 29 storm.
This story was updated to include comments from BGE. BGE and Pepco are allowed to recoup some of the money lost after the severe storm June 29 by charging a fee to be paid by customers who were without power, 9 News Now reported. "It's the law," Pepco spokesman Bob Hainey told 9 News Now. "It's called bill stabilization." Should bill stabilization result from a storm-induced power outage? Tell us in the comments. "The storm adjustment kicks in automatically,"Maryland Public Service Commission spokeswoman Regina Davis told 9 News Now. "The BSA (Bill Stabilization Adjustment) is calculated and applied by the companies, but checked by PSC staff and we make the utilities correct it if they get it wrong." The charge, BGE Spokesman Rob Gould …
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
In a letter to the utilities' regulatory agency, leaders of seven jurisdictions outline changes they said need to be made in light of the power failures during the derecho storm.
Less than two weeks after a massive storm disabled power to more than three quarters of a million Maryland residents, elected leaders wrote in a letter to a state regulatory agency that utility companies need to improve their performance and disclose critical outage information when government agencies request it. In the letter to the Public Service Commission, officials urged the regulatory agency to consider changes to the way utilities operate, including burying some power lines underground, mandatory staffing levels and improved disclosure of outage information to local municipal officials. The letter was signed by Howard County Executive Ken Ulman, Baltimore City Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, and the executives of Anne Arundel, …
Sunday, July 8, 2012
BGE said it has restored service to all customers who were without power following last week's violent derecho storm.
BGE said Sunday afternoon it has restored service all of the nearly 748,000 customers that lost power in the aftermath of last week's violent storms. The derecho storm was one of the most damaging storms in BGE's 200-year history, the company said in a news release. “We thank our customers for the incredible understanding and patience they displayed as we worked to repair the devastating damage to our system,” BGE senior vice president and chief operating officer Stephen J. Woerner said in a statement. “We know that, in many ways, this restoration effort was more trying than any other. Multiple severe storms and greater than 100-degree temperatures made the already difficult situation of being without electricity almost unbearable for many…
Saturday, July 7, 2012
'Customers are urged to make preparations in advance of likely new weather-related power outages.' - BGE officials.
The saga of the derecho storm-related power outages is about to come to an end, but the Baltimore Gas and Electric Company is warning customers to expect more outages, as there are storms in the forecast through the weekend. According to the National Weather Service, there is a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms Saturday night and a 50 percent chance of storms Sunday. "Customers are urged to make preparations in advance of likely new weather-related power outages," BGE said in a statement released Saturday. BGE also announced Saturday that approximately 650 residents were still without power as a result of the storm last Friday. As of 7 p.m., nearly 7,000 BGE customers in Maryland were without power, but most of the outages were a result…
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
A fourth Marylander died from heat and a contractor was killed taking down limbs from a damaged tree, bringing the toll to eight, as Gov. Martin O’Malley stresses that it is still a dangerous situation for elderly citizens.
UPDATED 3:50 p.m. Tuesday: Maryland officials reported a fourth heat-related death and the death of contractor who was removing tree limbs, bringing Maryland’s total to eight deaths due to Friday’s storm, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Joshua Sharfstein reported. The contractor died Monday in Garrett County while taking down limbs from a storm-damaged tree near Oakland, according to Ed McDonough, spokesman for the Maryland Emegency Management Agency (MEMA). More heat-related deaths are expected as crews restore power to the state, Sharfstein said. Gov. Martin O’Malley said the situation for senior citizens still without electricity and, therefore, air conditioning, is dire. “We are still in a very …
Fast-action video shows path of rare weather phenomenon whose after effects enter a fourth day Tuesday.
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
If you were in Maryland last Friday, you've experienced the force of a "straight-line storm," or derecho, from the ground. Wonder what the brief but punishing specter looked like from above? Check out this 23-second video of the satellite view of the storm making a beeline for the Mid-Atlantic.