For Immediate Release
PHILADELPHIA (June 1, 2016) – With a potentially higher number of severe storms predicted this summer, PECO has been hard at work to ensure safe, reliable, affordable and clean energy and energy services for customers all summer long. The company has invested more than $13 million in new technology and projects to prepare for heat and storms this summer, including upgraded substation equipment, new wires and poles and inspections.
"Every day, we work hard to provide safe and reliable service to our customers, no matter what conditions we face, and we prepare for severe, damaging weather all year long," said Mike Innocenzo, senior vice president and COO. "Critical to our efforts is our use of new innovative technology like our advanced meters and enhanced communication tools that help us restore service faster and provide important information to customers when storms do occur."
This work is part of more than $500 million invested each year in the company's systems. In addition, through PECO's System 2020 plan, PECO will spend an additional $274 million during the next five years to install advanced equipment and reinforce the local electric system, making it more weather resistant and less vulnerable to storm damage.
PECO completes hundreds of tasks to prepare for the summer season, including system work, testing and drills. PECO employees across the region are ready to respond to severe summer storms or emergencies if needed. And, as part of the Exelon family of companies, PECO now can draw on resources from sister utilities in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Washington, D.C., and Illinois to restore power quicker after major storms.
As PECO prepares, customers should prepare too:
Before severe weather hits, customers should:
Have a supply of bottled water and easy-to-prepare, non-perishable foods available.
Charge cell phones and mobile devices.
Have a flashlight with fresh batteries on each floor of your home.
Visit peco.com/alerts to choose how to receive information, via text, email or phone, including when power is out in their area, when service is expected to be restored, or when power is restored.
Text "ADDOUTAGE" to MYPECO (697326), to enroll in our two-way texting program to report outages and check the status of their outage.
If severe storms hit, our new online interactive outage map gives customers more information. Visitpeco.com/outagemap or click on the "Outage Map" link in the "Outage Center" section of peco.com. Customers also can report or view the status of an electric outage through our enhanced mobile website, PECO Smart Mobile On-the-Go, just visit peco.com from a mobile device.
Higher temperatures can lead to higher energy bills, and PECO provides a variety of programs to help customers save energy and money. For example, PECO Smart Ideas, the company's full suite of energy efficiency programs, helps residential, business, government and non-profit customers save energy and money. For more ways to save energy, visit peco.com/smartideas.
In addition, customers can save energy and lower their bills this summer by following a few simple tips:
Turn it off: Turn off all unnecessary lighting and devices.
Manage your thermostat: Keep thermostats at a constant, comfortable level when at home. Raise the thermostat setting for days of extreme heat to save even more. Install a programmable thermostat to automatically adjust your home's temperature settings when you're away or sleeping.
Keep shades, blinds and curtains closed: About 40 percent of unwanted heat comes through windows. Simply closing blinds and curtains, which act as a layer of insulation, can reduce heat in your home.
Use ceiling fans to circulate air: For those without air conditioning, use ceiling fans or portable fans with the windows partially open to circulate fresh air into your home. For those with air conditioning, fans can be used to evenly distribute cool air.
Use appliances wisely: Run appliances that produce heat (like clothes dryers, ovens and dishwashers) at night when it is cooler.
Based in Philadelphia, PECO is an electric and natural gas utility subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC). The company's 2,400 dedicated employees provide advanced, innovative energy solutions to 1.6 million electric and more than 511,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania. In 2015 PECO delivered 86.9 billion cubic feet of natural gas and 38 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity. The company also has an estimated annual economic impact of $4.5 billion in Pennsylvania, supporting more than 9,600 local jobs and producing $760 million in labor income. Founded in 1881, PECO is one of the Greater Philadelphia Region's most active corporate citizens, providing leadership, volunteer and financial support to numerous arts and culture, education, environmental, economic development and community programs and organizations. For more information visit PECO.com, and connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter.
If you are a member of the media and would like to receive PECO news releases via email, please send your email address to PECO.Communication@exeloncorp.com.