Skip to Main Content

Unitil Kicks Off 'Squirrel Week 2024'

Social media campaign raises awareness of critter-related power outages and protection measures.
Squirrel Week 2024
Hampton, NH

Today, Unitil kicks off “Squirrel Week 2024,” its annual social media campaign aimed at raising awareness of the hazards that nature’s critters can create for electrical infrastructure and the risks to their safety as well.

This is the third year that Unitil, a provider of electricity and natural gas to customers in New England, has dedicated a week in May toward highlighting the challenges posed by squirrels and other wildlife.

Through the unique campaign, Unitil will focus on squirrel-related issues and the efforts the company makes to prevent interference with electrical lines and other equipment and keep wildlife safe when they’re the most active.

According to Unitil data, 11 percent of power outages within the utility’s service territory are related specifically to squirrels, with peak activity typically occurring in the springtime. Animal contact as a whole account for approximately 14 percent of all system outages

Outages can be caused by squirrel activity via gnawing on lines, building nests on equipment, and sneaking into unwanted areas. When they interfere with electric lines and equipment, squirrels can cause damage and disrupt power. They can also be harmed or even killed.

“We’ve found our ‘Squirrel Week’ initiative to be a very effective way to bring attention to an issue that customers and the general public probably don’t think about very often,” said Unitil External Affairs Director Alec O’Meara. “We’re all well aware of the threat that bad weather poses to power lines and other electrical equipment, but the reality is that despite steps we’ve taken to add animal guards and other protective equipment in an effort to keep our wildlife safe and prevent damage to infrastructure, some animals are still able to sneak around these safeguards and cause damage.”

As part of the campaign, Unitil will donate $500 to each of the following wildlife conservation organizations:

  • Center for Wildlife, York/Cape Neddick, Maine
  • Mass Audubon Flat Rock Wildlife Sanctuary, Fitchburg, Mass.
  • Wildlife Heritage Foundation of New Hampshire

For more information on “Squirrel Week,” follow Unitil on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @Unitil.

facebook link, opens in a new tabtwitter link, opens in a new tabinstagram link, opens in a new tab


About Unitil

Unitil Corporation provides energy for life by safely and reliably delivering electricity and natural gas in New England. We are committed to the communities we serve and to developing people, business practices, and technologies that lead to the delivery of dependable, more efficient energy. Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company with operations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 108,500 electric customers and 88,400 natural gas customers.


Media Contact

Alec O'Meara
Director, External Affairs