Protecting reliability one circuit inspection at time
ASHLAND, Ky., Oct. 20, 2023 – Weather events and age can put a strain on the energy grid and available power supplies. That’s why strategic planning to increase reliability through maintenance and improvements of power delivery infrastructure is a top priority for Kentucky Power.
One of the tactics in place to protect grid integrity is circuit inspections. These inspections are performed as needed in daily work, but also as a targeted goal connected to the company’s reliability program.
“As a regulated utility, Kentucky Power is required to meet reliability standards through comprehensive long-term planning that helps drive strategic improvements,” said Everett Phillips, vice president of distribution. “Because storm damaged electrical facilities and equipment failures cause outages, we plan upgrades, replacements and inspections that help identify and address potential reliability risks before they occur.”
Every two years, Kentucky Power crews visually inspect overhead and the external, above-ground portions of underground distribution facilities to identify and correct potential problems before they can lead to an outage or cause a hazardous situation for customers.
“Through identifying and repairing potential problems, such as equipment defects, low clearances, right of way issues or any other facility deficiencies, Kentucky Power customers experience safer service with fewer service interruptions,” Phillips said.
Data from reliability improvement reports show the company has completed more than 80 percent of annual circuit inspections, including more than 4,000 circuits miles inspected. The list of circuits inspected each year is based on the total number of distribution circuits in the company’s system. Approximately half of the total circuit mileage is targeted each year.
“We know that increased resiliency and storm hardening is crucial to services so we can reliably serve customers today and in the future,” Phillips said. “That’s why our teams are hard at work every day to ensure the structural health and strength of our electrical assets.”
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