We are closely monitoring an approaching winter storm. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for the Washington Metropolitan Area from Tuesday evening to Wednesday evening. Weather forecasts are still changing, but some predict snow accumulations of more than a foot of snow through the Pepco region with up to 17 inches predicted in some locations in Montgomery County. We also expect wind gusts of up to 35 mph. A Winter Storm Watch means there is also a potential for significant sleet and/or ice. We are preparing for the worst of the forecasts.
Heavy, wet snow; ice; and high winds can bring tree limbs into contact with power lines to cause power outages. Heavy rain and oversaturated soil can allow trees already weakened by previous storms to fall onto power lines and equipment to cause power outages. Outages can also occur due to drivers skidding into utility poles along wet roads.
We will have extra line and tree crews available, and the Call Center will be staffed overnight. In addition to internal crews, we have more than 450 overhead line contractors already working on the system available if needed. Pepco Holdings Inc. (PHI), parent company for Pepco, is also asking for more contractor support and has asked for 250 mutual assistance crews from other utilities. We also have almost 300 tree contractors already working on our system.
Customers are asked to please call in any outages and stay away from any down wires. To report outages and/or downed wires, please call 1-877-737-2662, follow the prompts, and please ask for a call back to confirm that power has been restored. Outages also may be reported on our website or through our mobile app.