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For Immediate Release

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PECO Communications

PECO.Communication@exeloncorp.com

Love is in the Air, But Hold onto Your Balloons

Metallic balloons can lead to power outages and safety issues if not handled properly

PHILADELPHIA (February 14, 2020) – While that special someone may catch your eye this Valentine's Day, don't lose sight of foil balloons, also known as Mylar balloons, which can lead to outages if they come into contact with power lines. Untethered balloons cause thousands of unnecessary power outages each year for PECO customers and can also pose serious safety risks. In 2019, more than 4,600 customers lost service because of a Mylar balloon incident. These balloons also have been known to float for days and can end up having a negative impact on the environment.

When foil-coated balloons contact a power line or other electric equipment, their metallic properties can cause a surge of electricity that can impede equipment. These types of outages are preventable. PECO encourages customers to help reduce foil balloon-related power outages and ensure safety by keeping the following tips in mind:

  • Always keep balloons tethered and attached to weights.
  • Properly dispose of foil balloons by puncturing the balloon to release helium that otherwise could cause the balloon to float away.
  • NEVER touch a power line. Do not attempt to retrieve a balloon or toy that is entangled in an overhead power line. For assistance, call PECO at 1-800-841-4141.
  • Always assume power lines are energized and keep yourself, your belongings, and anything you are carrying at least 10 feet away at all times.

PECO customers can learn about more safety tips at peco.com/safety.

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PECO, founded in 1881, is Pennsylvania's largest electric and natural gas utility. Headquartered in Philadelphia, PECO delivers energy to more than 1.6 million electric customers and more than 529,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania. The company's 2,700 employees are dedicated to the safe and reliable delivery of electricity and natural gas as well as enhanced energy management conservation, environmental stewardship and community assistance. In 2018, PECO was named to Forbes Magazine's list of Best Employers for Women. The company also has an estimated annual economic impact of $4.8 billion in Pennsylvania, supporting more than 9,000 local jobs and producing $775 million in labor income. PECO is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (Nasdaq: EXC), the nation's only Fortune 100 utility and leading competitive energy provider. For more information visit PECO.com, and connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter.

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