Hurricane Irene Leaves Thousands Without Power In Maryland | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Hurricane Irene Leaves Thousands Without Power In Maryland

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While the damage to Pepco's customers has been extensive, the company says they expected it to be much worse.
Matt Bush
While the damage to Pepco's customers has been extensive, the company says they expected it to be much worse.

Hurricane Irene's overnight visit left hundreds of thousands without power in Maryland Sunday morning. And around 200,000 of those customers are in Prince George's County, 65,000 are in Montgomery County, and the rest are in the District.

BGE's biggest power outage numbers are coming from the city of Baltimore and Anne Arundel County. Areas have more than 100,000 customers each without power this morning.

Pepco president Thomas Graham says it's too difficult to say exactly when power will be restore.

"As we’ve always have said, it will be a multi-day event," Graham says. "When you have 220,000 customers out of service, and you’ve experienced the amount of damage that our system has incurred, it’s going to take time."

Graham says bucket trucks are in service this morning, and the crews have been out since 7 a.m. But the trucks cannot be used until wind gusts have fallen below 35 miles per hour.

While the damage to Pepco's customers has been extensive, Graham says they expected it to be much worse. For comparison, more than 500,000 customers were without power following Hurricane Isabel in 2003.

Many of the roads in Montgomery County are slick and covered with leaves, particularly on Connecticut Avenue and East-West Highway.

The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission is reporting that power outages are affecting a number of their facilities this morning, though both of their filtration plants are online and working, as they should.

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