For Immediate Release
SALISBURY, Md. - Some Delmarva Power customers in the Atlantic Ocean coastal areas in
Delaware and Maryland are experiencing momentary power interruptions caused by
salt contamination on the utility's power lines.
Several hundred customers began experiencing
brief interruptions in their electric service late Sunday night. Typically,
customers are seeing their lights blink repeatedly as they lose power
momentarily. The salt contamination of the power lines and equipment is caused
by prevailing winds bringing salt-laden air inland from the Atlantic Ocean.
The combination of salt and moisture
can cause arcing, sparking, blown fuses, pole fires and extensive power
Utility crews are using pressurized
water hoses to wash the salt from lines and equipment today. The Sussex County
Emergency Operations Center and volunteer fire departments from Bethany Beach,
Millville, Roxana, Dagsboro and Frankford, Del., are providing assistance. Washing
will be concentrated on a power line located between the Indian River Inlet and
Bethany Beach, Del.
To perform such work safely, lines
and equipment are de-energized, which means some customers could experience
intermittent power interruptions.
"To get rid of the salt contamination
problem, we need to power-wash the lines or hope for a hard rainfall," said
John Allen, Delmarva Power region vice president. Allen said that salt buildup
on power line insulators causes electrical faults. "To protect itself, our
system reacts to the faults and our customers see brief, power interruptions."
If customers see downed wires, or
notice loud noises or electrical arcing, they should stay away from the wires
and call Delmarva Power at 1-800-898-8045.
Find additional information about
Delmarva Power's by visiting www.delmarva.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/delmarvapower, on Twitter at www.twitter.com/delmarvaconnect. Our mobile app is available at www.delmarva.com/mobileapp.