Restoration update Feb. 17, 2014
Article was added on Monday, February 17, 2014
300 line workers helping to restore power at Santee Electric
Cooperative-aim to fully restore power by Wednesday
SC-In the aftermath of a historic ice storm described as
"devastating" by Governor Nikki Haley, more than 300 additional
line workers are now assisting power restoration efforts at Santee
Electric Cooperative (SEC). Although service has been restored to
more than 30,000 members, crews are working overtime to restore
electricity to more than 14,000 consumers.
know we have members who are extremely anxious to see their lights
come back on," said Floyd Keels, president and CEO of Santee
Electric Cooperative. "We certainly understand their frustration
and want them to know that every employee at Santee Electric is
working-- in some way-- to help restore power for
a wide swath of South Carolina, including the territory served by
Santee Electric, the 2014 winter storm delivered as much damage to
power systems as Hurricane Hugo in 1989. At the height of the
storm, more than 350,000 people in South Carolina did not have
officials, from Gov. Haley on down, have worked every day to
provide us every help we've requested," says Keels. "We now
hope to have most power restored no later than Friday."
crews from more than 7 states are now working to restore power at
the cooperative. To maximize the use of employee resources, Santee
Electric Cooperative has closed their district offices in Lake
City, Georgetown, Hemingway and Manning. Many of those employees
are now working at the co-ops' main office in Kingstree which is
open to the public and is serving as command central during the
though district offices are closed for normal business, drive thru
windows may be used to report outages beginning Tuesday morning and
members can reach a representative of Santee Electric Cooperative
at the following toll free numbers:
want all of our members to know we take this process personally,"
said Keels. "Many of our own employees and their families are still
without power. All I can ask is that you please be as patient as
possible and understand we won't stop working until the power is
efforts to restore power are geography and terrain. Santee
Electric comprises one of the largest geographic territories of any
electric co-op East of the Mississippi River. SEC provides power to
some of the state's most rural areas-serving portions of Clarendon,
Florence, Georgetown and Williamsburg counties. Low-lying wetlands,
swamps and dense forests are all impediments for line crews working
in the field.
line repair example
damage repair challenge for power systems can vary widely by type
of weather situation, type of damage caused, and the individual
situation at the specific repair site. However, I thought it
might be helpful to provide you an illustration.
whether used for publication/broadcast or simply for your internal
understanding, we have prepared this general example, for
illustration purposes only, of a scenario of line repair in an ice
a situation where multiple spans are damaged. A span is a length of
conductor wire between two poles.
weight of ice on trees or the wire itself breaks the wire and/or
tension on the wire as it breaks may pull it the distance of two or
more poles - the length of a football field for each span of wire
between two poles - 300 feet.
repair crew arrives. It may be a bucket truck or it may be line
workers who are climbing the poles with gaffs (an apparatus worn on
the lower leg).
a pole or poles have been broken, simply removing the 400-pound
broken pole, re-digging a hole, and setting a new pole can take as
much as 45 minutes per pole.
ice must be broken off the wire for the entire span being
line workers must pull the broken wire back into place.
new span of wire is put in place and connections between existing
and new wire spans are made.
wire is connected to the pole-top transformers.
service wires (that go from pole to home or business) must be
re-strung and connected.
line must be re-energized by manually closing the circuit in the
field (at the fuse, main line or substation)
time-consuming and multi-part process can add up to many hours for
only a few spans of wire. Then in a frustrating and not uncommon
turn of events in an icing situation, another section of that same
power line can later break because of the weight of ice on nearby
lines or trees.
<< Back to the News and Press Listing