For Immediate Release
NEWARK, Del. (June 27, 2018) – Delmarva Power customers will benefit from a $14-million effort to trim trees and remove vegetation along more than 1,400 miles of aerial electric lines in 2018. This work, which will continue through the year, will help maintain safe and reliable service for the energy company's customers across Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Maryland.
Tree and vegetation trimming is a critical part of Delmarva Power's efforts to keep the lights on for customers, especially as the company prepares for the summer storm season, where heavy rain and gusty winds can bring down trees and tree branches, causing damage to power lines and other electric equipment. Each year, trees cause about 40 percent of customer power outages.
Through the year, customers may notice vegetation management crews across the company's service area, including in Kent, New Castle, and Sussex counties in Delaware, and Caroline, Cecil, Harford, Kent, Queen Anne's, Somerset, Talbot, Wicomico, and Worcester counties in Maryland. As part of the company's ongoing commitment to the safety of customers and the local community, customers are notified before work begins in their area.
Delmarva Power's vegetation management crews are trained in arboricultural techniques as defined in the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) A300 Standard. This standard takes into account the type and location of the tree, its relation to overhead equipment, and overall health of the tree. When pruning trees to provide clearance from overhead equipment, Delmarva Power uses directional pruning techniques, whenever possible, to help direct tree growth away from equipment while also maintaining the health and beauty of the vegetation.
Delmarva Power's Tree Trimming and Vegetation Management Program is part of the comprehensive preventive maintenance work the company undertakes each year to proactively review its system and address potential problems before they occur. This work includes inspecting existing infrastructure, installing new, more modern equipment, and installing stronger, tree-resistant aerial cable. The company also uses innovative technologies to improve system reliability, such as specialized equipment that can automatically restore service more quickly or isolate damage. This work is essential in helping prevent those outages that can be prevented.
Planting new trees is also important to Delmarva Power. Each year, Delmarva Power partners with the Arbor Day Foundation to provide free trees to residential customers through the Energy-Saving Trees program. This annual initiative helps customers conserve energy and reduce household energy bills through strategic tree planting. Shade trees can reduce residential cooling costs by up to 30 percent, while in the winter months trees reduce wind speeds and infiltration of cold air into homes, reducing heating costs.
In instances where new trees are being planted near energy equipment, such as overhead wires, Delmarva Power recommends customers follow the Arbor Day Foundation's "Right Tree in the Right Place" guidelines, which advise that any trees planted within 20 feet on either side of pole-to-pole power lines have a mature height of less than 25 feet.
Delmarva Power is committed to providing its customers with a modern, reliable, and resilient energy grid. Over the last five years, Delmarva Power has spent hundreds of millions of dollars in Delaware and Maryland modernizing the local energy grid to further provide safe and reliable service for customers.
Delmarva Power customers continue to benefit from these enhancements. In Delaware, the number of electric outages has decreased 35 percent over the past five years, while the number of electric outages in the company's Maryland service area has decreased nearly 30 percent over the same timeframe.
To learn more about Delmarva Power, visit The Source, Delmarva Power's online news room. Find additional information by visiting delmarva.com, on Facebook at facebook.com/delmarvapower and on Twitter at twitter.com/delmarvaconnect. Delmarva Power's mobile app is available at delmarva.com/mobileapp.
About Delmarva Power: Delmarva Power, a public utility owned by Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), provides safe and reliable energy to more than 520,000 electric delivery customers in Delaware and Maryland and approximately 132,000 natural gas delivery customers in northern Delaware.