Skip Navigation

Baltimore County iWatch Logo

COVID-19 Coronavirus Updates and Guidance

The County is taking a number of actions to keep residents safe and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Find status information for County operations and services.

Public Safety News

 

Baltimore County Police and Fire News

Official News Blog of Baltimore County police, fire, homeland security and emergency management. Call 911 to report crimes in progress and emergencies.
Keyword: bge

In cooperation with BGE, the Baltimore County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM) encourages residents to review their readiness to handle winter energy costs and to maintain home heating systems.

Each year in the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control estimates, excessive cold kills more than 1,300 people; this figure is likely higher than that, experts say. Recognizing that heating costs pose a challenge for many, HSEM is sharing the following information from BGE.

Dealing With Heating Expenses

During the colder months, heating systems typically account for more than 40 percent of customers’ energy bills because extreme weather can triggers significant increases in energy use at home. BGE.COM provides resources for households that face challenges meeting energy costs: 

  • BGE's 2019-2020 Community Resource Guide.  This is a guide to federal, state and local resources, as well as programs from BGE and non-profit providers, targeted to households with trouble managing their heating bills. A Spanish language version is available. 

  • The BGE Smart Energy Savers Program®  lists energy efficiency and conservation programs available to customers, including appliance rebates, lighting discounts, and free Quick Home Energy Check-Ups.

Energy Saving and Safety Steps

HSEM encourages energy saving steps, including:

  • Maintain heating systems. Most cold weather energy expenses are related to heating your home. Schedule service for your heating system now to find out what maintenance is required to keep your system operating efficiently.
     
  •  Lower Water Heating Costs. Water heating accounts for about 18 percent of the energy consumed in your home. For savings, turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120°F).
     
  •  Adjust the Temperature. When you are at home and awake, set your thermostat as low as comfortable for you. When you are asleep or out of the house, turn your thermostat back 10 to 15 degrees for eight hours; this should save around 10 per cent a year on heating bills. Use a programmable thermostat for easy adjustments. If you have a heat pump, maintain a moderate setting or use a programmable thermostat specially designed for use with heat pumps.
  • Keep Natural Gas Appliance Vents Clear. Know where your natural gas appliances vent to the exterior and ensure the vents are clear.  Some high-efficiency gas appliances, such as water heaters and furnaces, vent along the foundation of buildings. If these vents become blocked by snow or ice, exhaust may back up resulting in deadly carbon monoxide buildup or a release of natural gas.        

Thirteen Baltimore County volunteer fire companies have received grants for equipment and preparedness through BGE's Emergency Response and Safety Grant program.

BGE awarded more than $272,000 in grants to the Baltimore County companies and  52 other fire companies and non-profits throughout Maryland at a press event held yesterday at the Arbutus Volunteer Fire Department.

Baltimore County Acting Fire Chief Jennifer Aubert-Utz attended.

The BGE grant program, in its seventh year, helps agencies purchase vital public safety equipment and provides funding for emergency preparedness exercises and training.

Companies Receiving Grant Funding

The following companies received funding:

  • Arbutus VFD -- Ice rescue equipment
  • Chestnut Ridge VFC -- Hazardous contaminants extractor
  • Cockeysville VFC -- Fire hose and applicances
  • Glyndon VFC -- Fire hose and appliances
  • Liberty Road VFC -- Protective safety equipment
  • Long Green VFC -- Automated external defibrillators
  • Lutherville VFC -- Portable scene lighting apparatus
  • Maryland Line Fire Protective Association -- Turnout gear replacement
  • Middle River Volunteer Fire and Rescue Co. -- Emergency readiness improvements
  • Pikesville VFC -- Rescue portable lighting and "Stop the Bleed" training
  • Rosedale VFC -- Positive pressure ventilators
  • White Marsh VFC -- High-visibility safety jackets
  • Wise Avenue VFC -- Safety and operational readiness improvements

In addition, BGE provided grants to other institutions serving Baltimore County, including the Baltimore County Police Foundation, Chesapeake Search and Rescue Dog Association, Stevenson University and the Towson University Foundation.

Debris and smoke scarred over a large area following the second home explosion in two days, this one in Woodlawn.Update: December 6,  10:45 a.m.

An investigation of this fire and explosion by Baltimore County Police fire investigators is ongoing. At this preliminary stage of the investigation, there are no obvious signs of arson.

The two homes on either side of the house that blew up were rendered uninhabitable. One of these homes suffered fire damage, the other structural damage from the blast. Several other homes were damaged less severely.

Fire crews estimate that 10 adults and three children were displaced as a result of this incident. The Red Cross responded to assist.

No injuries have been reported.

Original release:

Baltimore County Fire crews today responded to the second home explosion in two days when a single-family residence in a Woodlawn neighborhood blew up at 2:12 p.m.

This explosion, in the 7400 block of Remoor Road, 21207, was stronger than yesterday's incident in Baltimore Highlands. That explosion, in the 2800 block of Virginia Ave. 21227, heavily damaged a home and seriously injured one person.

Today's explosion caused no injuries -- no one was inside the house when it exploded -- but it destroyed one home, damaged at least five others and caused a two-alarm fire. The two homes adjacent to the house destroyed by the explosion were the most seriously damaged -- one by fire, the other from the force of the explosion.

An investigation by Baltimore County Police fire investigators is under way. BGE responded to the scene.

BCoFD crews asked residents to shelter in place while they checked other homes on the block for structural damage and the presence of any dangerous gases.

 
 
Revised June 27, 2017