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Posted at 4:20 PM ET, 07/28/2010

Power back for woman on oxygen system

By Washington Post editors

The lights are back on for Iylene Becker, the 50-year-old Silver Spring woman who breathes at night through an oxygen concentrator system and ran into problems when Sunday’s thunderstorm cut her power.

Her mother, Adele Becker, said the women came home about 6 p.m. Tuesday to discover that their electricity was up and running. It was also working on the rest of the block, she said.

Becker says Pepco representatives told her three times last year that the company does not keep a list of customers with special medical needs. Ed Sandel, a longtime friend of the Beckers and a Rockville resident, said Wednesday he was also told that no such list existed when he called Pepco’s emergency line early this week.

But Pepco says its emergency notification program, which serves 1,314 customers, has existed for more than 15 years.

Becker said she plans to call Pepco again soon and ask about the program. For now, she is happy that her daughter — who had her windpipe surgically opened last year — is able to sleep using her electric oxygen concentrator system, not the emergency liquid oxygen they purchased.

“As long as we don’t have to worry about what’s going on at night, that’s a good thing,” Becker said.

--Stephanie Lee

By Washington Post editors  | July 28, 2010; 4:20 PM ET
Categories:  Maryland  
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