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For Immediate Release


Delmarva Power Urges Hurricane Preparedness

OCEAN CITY, Md.  - With this month marking the start of the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season, officials from Delmarva Power held a news conference in Ocean City, Md., today to remind the public to be prepared to cope with the problems associated with destructive tropical weather that could hit the region any time between now and Nov. 30.

After one of the quietest hurricane seasons in decades, forecasters with The Weather Channel predict a below-average 2014 Atlantic hurricane season. The early outlook calls for 11 named storms, including five hurricanes, two of which are predicted to attain major hurricane status with top winds of 111 mph or higher.

"Even though fewer storms are predicted this year, it only takes one storm to cause property damage and widespread power outages," said Jim Smith, Delmarva Power Senior Public Affairs Manager. "We want to assure our customers that Delmarva Power is committed to an emergency response system that makes safety a priority, restores power as quickly as possible and provides customers with information on how to prepare for and deal with weather-related outages. We'll be prepared to add more personnel and resources as needed and work with local governments through our Emergency Services Partnership Program to activate emergency procedures."

Delmarva Power employees prepare for the possibility of storm-related power outages by participating in emergency drills on a regular basis. In addition, the company maintains an adequate supply of essential equipment, such as poles, wires and transformers, and stays in contact with other utilities to quickly arrange for mutual assistance in case of a natural disaster.

"We also believe that preventive maintenance is essential in reducing the potential for service interruptions caused by stormy weather," said Smith. "We plan to continue to make investments over the next several years to upgrade our electric infrastructure. We'll also continue regular tree trimming near power lines to help avoid outages that can be caused by trees and limbs that fall during storms."

Delmarva Power also suggests that customers assemble an emergency kit that can be used at home and, if necessary, taken with them if they're ordered to evacuate. Each kit should include a flashlight, battery-powered clock and radio, extra batteries, non-perishable food, manual can opener, bottled water and a list of important phone numbers. All items can be placed into a large cooler which is easy to grab if a person has to leave home quickly.

Delmarva Power also provides a "Storm Preparation Handbook" that can be downloaded from its website ( or you can call Customer Care at 800-375-7117 to request a copy via mail.

Smith was joined at today's event by Joe Theobald, Director of Emergency Services for the Town of Ocean City; Fred Webster, Director of Emergency Services for Worcester County, Md.; Chris Norris, President of Ocean City AARP Chapter 1917; and Sue Rantz, Chief Animal Control Officer for Worcester County, Md.

"Hurricane hazards come in many forms, including storm surge, heavy rainfall, inland flooding, high winds, tornadoes and rip currents," said Theobald. "It's important to be informed and prepared for these hazards. Also, it's important to know if you live in an evacuation area and whether your home is vulnerable to storm surge, flooding and wind. Perhaps, most importantly, have a family emergency plan and disaster supply kit, and encourage your friends and other family members to do the same."

"When it comes to storm preparations, my advice to senior citizens is to listen to the emergency services experts regarding safety advice," said Norris. "Make sure you fuel your vehicles prior to any storm and if applicable, take care of your pets as best you can. And, by all means, don't do anything that could jeopardize the safety of you and your family."

Rantz provided information on what people should do to protect their pets when a storm strikes the region.

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