MARYLAND

PEPCO trims, cuts trees to prevent power outages

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In the wake of criticism from the huge power outages after last year's snow storms, PEPCO has spent the better part of this year cutting and pruning trees it feels pose a threat to power line. But, some residents are upset that their once green scenery is now gone.

"It looks like scorched earth," Oya Bain said. "Look how ugly it looks, and it's going to get worse."

Bain has lived on the once tree lined street parallel to Rockville Pike for almost 30 years.

"They cut everything. A great number of trees," she added.

According to PEPCO, strict Maryland-mandated guidelines are followed when cutting trees. Right now, the agency can cut trees it feels are a threat to power lines without notifying residents.

PEPCO's Jerry Pastermak explained, "The average number of outages per customer is down by nearly 40 percent."

But, many residents, like Bain and her neighbors on Rockville Pike, want to have some input on what is trimmed or cut down.

Bain said PEPCO's work has left them dealing with noise from traffic and the trash thrown from Rockville Pike. She said she and her neighbors don't know why the company "ruined" their neighborhood's canopy of trees.

"You could see the trees leaned toward the street and not toward the wires, so they weren't a danger to the wires," Bain continued.

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