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West Penn Power Denies Power Surge Claims

"I don't want anything from them, other than to make it right. I feel that they should do the right thing here and replace the equipment," said Kline.

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Many residents in Waynesboro are upset this week after West Penn Power denied their claims after a major power surge caused damage to their property.

West Penn Power recently denied more than 150 reimbursement claims after a major power surge in Waynesbro, and Lisa Kline was one of them.

"I don't want anything from them, other than to make it right. I feel that they should do the right thing here and replace the equipment," said Kline.

A spokesperson with First Engery said on June 27, 2014 a power surge left more than 1,000 customers in the dark and caused damage to appliances and equipment.

"When a higher voltage line comes in contact with lower voltage line that does create a power surge, which can in some cases, disable some electronic equipment," said Scott Surgeoner, spokesperson for First Energy Corp.

"It actually sounded like a gun going off in the building, it was very scary, it could have been really bad," explained Kline.

Kline said that all three tanning beds in her salon have been destroyed and will cost $32,000 to replace.

West Penn Power said they received about 190 claims and said the claims were denied because the company was not negligent.

"We had done routine maintenance and inspection of our facilities less than a year prior to this event, and yes the cross arm broke and that is not negligence on West Penn Power's part," said Surgeoner.

Kline said her insurance has agreed to pay for the damage but she has taken action against the power company.

"But I also put in an informal complaint with the Public Utility Commission and hopefully other people in the area will do the same, and if they do that we will have more of a chance of them opening an investigation," said Kline.

"They were proper and correct in filing a claim with the company, however once that claim was denied, they should have homeowners insurance and that homeowners insurance is intended to pick up those cost, in this case, that we are not responsible for," said Surgeoner.

West Penn Power said they stand by their decision on each claim they denied. They have about 40 more claims to deal with and said it will take about up to two weeks to solve.

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