[Chat] BGE outage this Saturday

Emily Chalmers echalmers at mindspring.com
Wed Jun 22 19:53:10 EDT 2005

After I filed a complaint with the Public Service Commission about the lack
of information on this weekend's outage, I received a call from a gentleman
named Mr. Rolle at BGE. He was very helpful and explained a number of
things I had asked about.

First, the reason for the outages: actually, BGE is trying to help us. Our
grid is being connected to another grid, so that if this one goes down,
power can be restored with what Mr. Rolle described as "the flip of a
switch." He said that this outage should complete the work and be that last
one needed.

Second, he was concerned about the lack of information on several counts. I
explained that tenants weren't getting the information on outages from
landlords and asked if BGE could post information around the neighborhood
when outages were imminent. Mr. Rolle said that possibly no one had
considered that problem and agreed that BGE should look into doing
something about it.

In addition, he said that the letter should have contained a phone number
people who absolutely had to have power could call--for instance, if
someone needed a ventilator. He said he would look into why the information
wasn't in the letter.

Finally, he noted that even he had had to search for the answer to the
question of whether there is a temperature ceiling that would automatically
cancel the outage. There is--90 degrees. However, BGE hopes that it will
not be too hot this Saturday and that all the work can be completed
quickly. Six hours is the outside estimate; the work could be completed

I pointed out to him that the problem was simply one of communication and
public relations. Had BGE noted all these things in a well-crafted letter,
people would have baked cookies and made ice tea for the workers. Everyone
would have been happy that something was being done about potential
outages, would have seen that people who needed power had some recourse,
and in general would have put up with the outage without grumbling.
Instead, we received this really crummy letter that said nothing and
contained a major mistake. He concurred and said he would make notes for
future letters.

Hope this information is useful. Please share it with friends and neighbors
and let renters know!

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