6,000 customers in Frederick County lost power during the storm.
Frederick, Md (KM). The “lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer” are also know for thunderstorms, such as the one that hit the Frederick area on Tuesday afternoon. “This time of year you can also get pretty severe storms. If there’s enough wind, lightning and flooding, it may take us several days to get the power back on to everyone. The key is being prepared,” said Todd Meyers, spokesman for Potomac Edison.
On Tuesday, a powerful storm and a weather phenomenon known as a “microburst” downed power lines along Ballenger Creek Pike in the Frederick area. Meyers says a total of 6,000 customers were left in the dark, 3,000 of them the result of the lines coming down along Ballenger Creek Pike.
Meyers says one way to be prepared when the electricity goes out due to the weather is to have several flashlights in the home, and plenty of spare batteries. “You never want to use candles. They don’t give you very good light, and they’ve been documented to cause house fires,” he says.
In addition, he says, make sure you have a enough food and water on hand. “If you use electric stoves, make sure you have some things on hand that you can eat that don’t require any electricity to prepare,” says Meyers.
There are some people who depend on electricity to literally stay alive, and Meyers says family members need to make plans for these relatives when the power goes out. “There are people out there with oxygen machines and other medical devices that really need to have a plan in place,” he says.
And that could mean having a place for these people to go in case a storm knocks out power. “If there’s a need to have electricity for some type of medical equipment, that you can either produce yourself easily through a generator, or you need to know where to go,” he says.
If power lines come down on roadways or on your property, Potomac Edison says don’t approach them. “Trees come down or limbs come down, you have a mess of wires on the ground wrapped up. And you’re not sure if it’s a phone line or a de-energized power line. You need to treat everything like an energized power line and stay way,” says Meyers.
You can call Potomac Edison and report it at 1-888-LIGHTSS (544-4877).
By Kevin McManus