Jul 3, 2013
With another heat wave approaching after the Independence Day holiday, PPL Electric Utilities has outlined its summer readiness in a report submitted this week to the state Public Utility Commission.
In the report, the utility notes the variety of work — preventive maintenance programs, system upgrades and reliability enhancement initiatives, and storm response improvements — completed to be ready for this summer. The company completed more than 40 projects through June designed to improve performance and handle increased demand in certain local areas on its distribution system.
Projects ranged from construction of new lines and rebuilding existing lines in growing areas to upgrading or building new substations. The company’s nearly $1 billion capital investment plan for the year includes more than 200 projects to improve reliability, address aging infrastructure and enhance operations.
Throughout the year, PPL Electric Utilities manages comprehensive maintenance and system improvement programs on its nearly 50,000 miles of power lines, 400 substations and nearly 1 million poles and towers. That program includes visual and thermal inspections of its lines and substation equipment, tree clearing around thousands of miles of power lines, and installing animal guards and lightning protection to prevent service interruptions.
The utility does not expect power supply issues or delivery problems this summer. The system performed well during previous heat waves and forecasted peak demand is lower than record levels. The existing summer peak demand record of 7,554 megawatts was set on Aug. 1, 2006. The electric demand peaked last summer on July 18 at 6,968 megawatts. PJM Interconnection, the mid-Atlantic grid operator, reports sufficient power supply to meet demand this summer.
“When summer brings extreme heat and higher electric usage, our customers expect dependable electric service to help keep them cool. We must always be ready to deal with damaging storms that can occur during the summer,” said Gregory Dudkin, president of PPL Electric Utilities. “Based on our planning, completion of our strategic investments, and storm response improvement initiatives, we believe we’re ready to meet customer needs and expectations.”
In extreme weather conditions such as heat waves or cold snaps energy usage rises sharply. Customers are advised to take steps to stay safe and keep cool this summer, while keeping energy efficiency in mind. PPL Electric Utilities offers energy saving tips on its web site, www.pplelectric.com.
PPL Electric Utilities, a subsidiary of PPL Corporation (NYSE: PPL), provides electric delivery services to about 1.4 million customers in Pennsylvania and consistently ranks among the best companies for customer service in the United States. More information is available at www.pplelectric.com.
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