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AEP Faces Possible Fine From Public Utilities Commission

American Electric Power faces possible fines from the Public Utilities Commission. For the second consecutive year the Columbus-based utility had too many power outages that lasted too long. AEP Spokeswoman Vikki Michalski (Muh-hull'-skee) says downed trees are the major source of power disruptions and since 2009, the company has sped up its tree clearance along power lines. "At the end of 2012 we had invested approximately $237-million dollars and completed clearing roughly 21,000 miles of our 31,000 miles of our overhead electric distribution lines." Says Michalski. Public Utilities Commission spokesman, Jason Gilham, says the agency will now review AEP's efforts to limit power disruptions and determine whether the company will be fined or sanctioned.