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Pennsylvania Electric Companies To Attend Forum On Storm Planning & Response

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(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Pennsylvania electric utilities hit by Hurricane Irene will appear before the Public Utility Commission next month to discuss their planning for, and response to, the storm.

At the height of the storm, there were three-quarters of a million Pennsylvania customers without power, and 1.3 million customers in Pennsylvania were without power at some point during Irene—some for up to 10 days. But PUC spokeswoman Jennifer Kocher says the forum on “electric reliability” to be held by the agency on October 12th is not about pointing fingers or assessing blame.

“We thought that the utilities did do a very good job. But – you can always learn from things that have happened. There’s always room for improvement. And so we want to take advantage of this opportunity to improve, and not just sit back and say ‘everybody did a great job’ and not learn anything,” Kocher says.

Kocher says six Pennsylvania electric utilities were affected by the storm, and Irene ranked among the top five storms in history for all six.

Reported by Tony Romeo, KYW Newsradio