) string of vegetation management programs are in full swing with
its subsidiary Potomac Edison announcing that its vegetation
management program is progressing well. It is currently
conducting these programs in the service territories of Western
Maryland and the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia.
To date, the company has successfully cut down tree climbs
over 1,200 circuit miles of power lines and estimates to complete
a further 1,400 miles by the end of 2013. The entire project is
projected to cost around $17 million.
Side by side, another FirstEnergy ancillary Mon Power is also
running vegetation management projects in 34 counties in
north-central West Virginia. These initiatives are aimed at
pruning tree-climbs in order to prevent damage to electric
infrastructure during severe storms and thereby improving service
In addition, FirstEnergy's operating wings, Pennsylvania
Electric Company and Metropolitan Edison Company are also
advancing well with their respective vegetation control programs
in Pennsylvania. These companies are expected to shell out
roughly $19 million and $15 million, respectively.
In the summer months, FirstEnergy will carry on its vegetation
management tasks in the Allegany, Carroll, Frederick, Garrett,
Montgomery and Washington countryside in Maryland, and Berkeley,
Grant, Hardy, Hampshire, Jefferson, Mineral and Morgan in West
FirstEnergy's diligent efforts to preserve its assets will
contribute to smooth power delivery which in turn will help
retain its customer base. These ongoing programs might lead to
additions of new customers to its service list.
Meanwhile, we expect the strength of the FirstEnergy's
transmission lines will be put to test as the primary American
weather tracking body National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration ("NOAA") has projected extremely heavy storms in
the coming months.
FirstEnergy currently maintains a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
However, other utilities that warrant a look are Zacks Ranked #2
DTE Energy Company
Akron, Ohio-based FirstEnergy engages in the generation,
transmission and distribution of electricity in the United
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