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Delmarva Power Reminds Customers to Call Before Digging

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Steer clear of overhead and underground utility lines

NEWARK , Del. Spring means many people will be outside doing yard work or engaging in recreational activities, underscoring the need to be safe around overhead and underground utility lines.

Delmarva Power urges you to avoid power lines when carrying long or tall items, such as ladders, scaffolding, tree saws and pool cleaning equipment by holding them parallel to the ground. Remember to look up before raising any items to be sure they are clear of any overhead wires.

Touching a power line with any part of your body or most objects can result in serious injury or death. Electricity can move through conductive materials such as water, metal, wood, aluminum, string and plastics. Certain critical clearances are required by law and a minimum of 10 feet must be maintained when working near power lines.

April has been designated as National Safe Digging Month; the nationwide number to call before you dig is 811. When 811 is called from anywhere in Delmarva Power’s service territory, the call is routed to an operator who will ask for the location of the digging job. Within a few days, a locator is sent to mark the approximate location of underground utility lines so you'll know what's below - and be able to dig safely. This is a free service.

Remember, if you make contact with utility lines with digging tools or equipment, you and others could be seriously injured, and you may be liable for injuries and repair costs.

For more safety tips, log onto Delmarva Power’s Web site at www.delmarva.com.

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Delmarva Power, a public utility owned by Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), provides safe and reliable energy to nearly 498,000 electric delivery customers in Delaware and Maryland and over 123,000 natural gas delivery customers in northern Delaware .