Wee hour power outages linked to transmission line job

The in basket: This Road Warrior will go a bit afield from our normal subject matter, dealing with a series of power outages, but since my wife and I had been wondering about the same thing, I told Dave Dahlke of South Kitsap I’d try to get him an answer.

When I saw Dave at the Memorial Day ceremony at Sunset Lane Cemetery, he asked if I knew what has been causing the power to go out briefly in the wee hours of the morning in the Manchester area. It had happened three times at his house, and at ours, over the past couple of months. The most recent was last Sunday at 2:50 a.m..

Each time the outage lasted an hour or so. It meant unplugging our various computer-enhanced appliances to guard against power-surge damage when the power was restored, and, of course, resetting our clocks.

Dave wondered if it was related in any way to the multi-million dollar transmission line Puget Sound Energy has had built along Mile Hill Drive and Baby Doll, Collins and Woods roads.

The out basket: Thanks to the sharp  eye of Linda Streissguth, PSE’s manager of government and community relations, I got an answer.

She spotted an entry on their call log showing that I had inquired about the outages. The first PSE employee I talked with was able to tell me only that Sunday’s resulted from a branch on a limb. Without the dates of the other outages, she couldn’t tell me more.

But Linda was aware of the two outages without needing to know the dates. And yes, they were related to the transmission line project., she said.

The work includes modifications inside three substations in addition to the work along the roads, she said. It involves transferring the power load from one line to another, and on those two occasions early in the morning, an equipment failure knocked out the power for an hour or so.

It was just an odd coincidence that Sunday’s outage was at the same approximate time of day and duration as those two, she said. It wasn’t related to the project.

“We’re working hard on this very significant project,” she said, and asked the customers to be patient. The job is to improve the reliability of electrical service in eastern South Kitsap. More detail can be found online at www.pse.com/inyourcommunity/kitsap/constructionprojects, and clicking on East Port Orchard to Manchester transmission line.


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