Fountain Green Elementary School in Harford County Wins BGE’s Natural Gas Safety Contest

“Educating our customers, especially children, on how to remain safe around natural gas is a priority for BGE.”

Story Topics

Education Community

Fountain Green Elementary School is the $10,000 winner of BGE’s natural gas safety contest, the “The Adventures of Captain Mercaptan®, BGE Natural Gas Safety Hero Challenge.” The contest challenges elementary students at schools in BGE’s service area to illustrate gas safety messages featuring Captain Mercaptan, BGE’s fictional natural gas safety superhero. Ryleigh, a fourth-grade student at Fountain Green, drew the first-place comic strip.

BGE, along with WBAL-TV meteorologist Ava Marie and Harford County Executive Barry Glassman, presented Fountain Green Elementary School in Bel Air, Md. with the grand prize $10,000 check.



“It is wonderful to see the continued enthusiasm and creativity of the students participating in the Captain Mercaptan contest,” said Christopher Burton, BGE vice president of Gas Distribution. “Educating our customers, especially children, on how to remain safe around natural gas is a priority for BGE. Our natural gas safety contest not only taps into children’s creativity, it also helps reinforce valuable information that can be life-saving for the entire community.”


Captain Mercaptan teaches kids how to recognize a natural gas leak and the steps they need to take when they smell gas. Captain Mercaptan’s name is derived from “mercaptan,” a safety additive put in natural gas to give it a distinctive rotten egg odor that makes gas easier to detect. The superhero and his safety sidekicks, Sunny and Piper, were designed in 2014 by elementary school students during BGE’s first “The Adventures of Captain Mercaptan” contest.



BGE’s Natural Gas Safety Hero Challenge

Participating schools, public and private, can win up to $10,000 toward a school enrichment project. In addition, a teacher from the grand prize-winning school receives a $500 gift card and teachers from the other winning schools receive $100 gift cards. Overall, $35,000 is awarded by BGE to the winning schools each year, and since the contest’s inception BGE has awarded $245,000 to area schools.