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Storm Safety: MD Residents Urged to Prepare for Power Outages

Baltimore Gas & Electric suggests that residents prepare for power outages caused by downed tree limbs. Forecasts call for severe weather across the state today.

Utility officials are suggesting that Maryland residents charge cell phones, top off their gas tanks and take other steps to cope if predicted storms knock out power. File|Patch
Utility officials are suggesting that Maryland residents charge cell phones, top off their gas tanks and take other steps to cope if predicted storms knock out power. File|Patch

As utility crews work to restore power to Maryland residents, weather forecasts are calling for more storms with strong winds later on Monday that could again knock out electricity.

Utility officials are urging residents to prepare for power outages caused by downed tree limbs. Baltimore Gas & Electric has a less than a dozen outage sites remaining affecting fewer than 500 customers. PEPCO utility has only one outage affecting a handful of customers.

The National Weather Service has issued a severe thunderstorm watch until 8 p.m. Monday for much of the state, including the city of Baltimore. Storms may produce damaging winds and tornadoes are possible, along with heavy rains and localized flash flooding.

The Maryland Emergency Management Agency suggests that during stormy weather residents should have a disaster supply kit with water, non-perishable food, a battery- or crank-operated radio and other necessities in case of an extended power outage. Now is also the time to make sure cell phones and other devices are fully charged in case of a power outage.

BG&E is mobilizing additional crews and storm personnel in advance of Monday’s expected storms.

Before storms hit take these steps:

Stay informed – Be aware of changing weather conditions and plan ahead. Have a battery-powered radio with a weather band so you can hear emergency information when the power is out.

Make a plan – Discuss and document an emergency plan with those in your care. Develop a family emergency plan that includes alternative arrangements should the need arise to leave your home. Make provisions for special needs of any family member such as the elderly, disabled, medically affected or infants. 

Make a list of emergency phone numbers (including 877.778.2222 to report an outage or a downed wire to BGE) and keep a personal telephone book and one corded phone or a cell phone on hand.

Build an emergency kit – Keep enough emergency supplies on hand for you and those in your care. Remember supplies for children, those with special needs and pets.

Keep the following items readily available:

  • 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
  • Blankets

Residents should also consider gassing up their vehicles. And residents who rely on well water should fill a bathtub with water in advance of severe weather.

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