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Forest Hill Residents Unhappy With BGE Service During Heat Wave

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Mike Schuh joined WJZ Eyewitness News as a general assignment reporter...
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FOREST HILL, Md. (WJZ) — Tempers flared along with the temperatures in a fast-growing area of Harford County this weekend.

Mike Schuh reports homeowners are skeptical that BGE has fixed a well-known power problem.

This weekend in Forest Hill, there were 500 sweltering homeowners.

“It has been unbearable, absolutely unbearable,” said Carolyn Ramos.

A fast-growing area, there’s enough power getting to these homes—but when something goes wrong, there aren’t enough backup wires to keep the power on.

“The most frustrating part is we can’t get an answer from BGE about what they’re doing,” said Lynn Mullahey.

BGE tried to bring power in from another line.

“Customers on that line were already using a lot of power so those transfers were not holding,” said Linda Foy, BGE.

They were not only hot, but also out of water.  These people are on wells and their pumps need electricity.  BGE says it’s been working for years to fix that particular problem.

“BGE understands our customers’ frustration, particularly when the weather is so hot,” said Foy.

So, five days after the heat wave, the switch is thrown on the long-planned-for solution.  The new cables in a box will help.

“And what they’re going to do is give us more options for re-routing power if there is a problem on a particular line,” Foy said.

For 44 out of 48 hours, Bruce Horka’s power was out.  His home was in the mid-90s.  He’s skeptical.

“Well, really have no idea if it will work properly or not.  Looks good on paper, but history has shown it probably will not,” Horka said.

BGE says this is just the first step.  About $5 million more in improvements is yet to come.

BGE says it will hold a public meeting in early August to detail further improvements.

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