WTOP Beltway Poll: Customers support buried power lines

Power outages, like those caused by the June 29 derecho, brought down trees and power lines. (WTOP Photo)

Darci Marchese, wtop.com

WASHINGTON – After every major power outage in the region, there’s talk about putting power lines underground.

While there’s a lot of support across the board for burying power lines, the latest WTOP Beltway Poll, conducted by Heart+Mind Strategies, finds Pepco and Dominion Virginia customers are the most supportive.

Sixty-four percent of Pepco customers polled favor burying the lines, followed by 63 percent of Dominion customers. The poll finds just more than half, 52 percent, of Baltimore Gas and Electric customers favor underground power lines.

Pepco recently failed in its request for a $69 million rate increase. The utility did manage to win approval of an $18 million increase.

The WTOP Beltway Poll finds 53 percent of Pepco customers disagree with the decision for a rate increase. Forty percent said they agree.

Maryland electric customers also disagree with the Bill Stabilization Adjustment, which permits electric companies to charge customers for the first 24 hours of an outage, even if they are without power.

A full two-thirds of customers say they feel the price increase should be eliminated.

The poll has a margin of error of 4.17 percent.

Editor’s Note: The D.C. metro phone survey was conducted among 550 adults age 18 and over, between July 26 and July 29, 2012. This included representative samples of 200 people in Virginia (Arlington, Fairfax, Fauquier, Loudoun, Prince William, Spotsylvania, Stafford) 250 in Maryland (Anne Arundel, Calvert, Charles, Frederick, Montgomery, Prince George’s and 100 in D.C.

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)


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