Power problems hit BG&E; customers


Digital clocks were flashing around Central Maryland yesterday afternoon after a circuit breaker blew in South Baltimore, affecting power to all Baltimore Gas & Electric Co. customers, a company spokeswoman said.

No one lost power as a result of the malfunction at 3:17 p.m., but lights dimmed, computers slowed, and other electrical appliances were affected, Peggy Mulloy, the spokeswoman, said.

A separate incident in the Glen Burnie area at about the same time resulted in lost power for about 1,500 customers, she said.

OC A circuit breaker at BG&E;'s Westport power plant, off the Balti

more-Washington Parkway, blew at 3:17 p.m. causing a "voltage dip" throughout the system, Ms. Mulloy said. The incident lasted six minutes, she said.

"Voltage is the force that pushes electricity through the wires," Ms. Mulloy said.

BG&E; has more than 1 million customers in Baltimore and eight counties -- Baltimore, Carroll, Harford, Howard, Anne Arundel, Prince George's, Montgomery and Calvert.

L BG&E; did not know the cause of the problem, Ms. Mulloy said.

In the Glen Burnie area, a defective circuit breaker on a transformer at the Ferndale substation left customers without power from 3:12 p.m. to 4:50 p.m., she said. Customers near Baltimore-Annapolis Boulevard from the Beltway to Second Avenue were affected, she said.

The two incidents were not related, Ms. Mulloy said.

Backup generators at Baltimore-Washington International Airport kicked on, and flights and communications were not affected, Paul Foley, operations manager, said.

In another utility problem, Tom Wilson, who works for the city water department, said some Northern Baltimore residents had no water yesterday afternoon and others experienced lowered pressure. Mr. Wilson said the cause of the problem had not been determined and he did not know how many people were affected.

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