PPL maintains 35,000 miles of aerial distribution lines across its system. Inspections of distribution lines and poles are done periodically based on a schedule and circuit performance to identify equipment problems that may affect system performance or service to customers.
Overhead line inspections identify the weak links in the system so that damaged or deteriorated equipment can be repaired or replaced. Some of these inspections are done with infrared cameras to identify problems before an outage occurs.
Each year, several million dollars are set aside for specific reliability improvements on local distribution circuits that experience a higher than average number of power outages or outages with generally longer duration.
Engineers regularly review performance of all distribution circuits and identify solutions like additional fuses, more lightning arrestors or installation of automated devices to provide better performance. In some cases, circuits are re-designed to improve reliability for customers.
Distribution Circuit Performance Improvement Project
- Initiated in 2010, this project encompasses the planned replacement of selected components on entire circuits prioritized by reliability performance.
- About 600 miles will have the components replaced each year. Examples of components include porcelain lightning arresters, insulators and cross-arms.
- In 2011 and 2012, PPL Electric Utilities is installing or replacing fault indicators at 3,100 locations on the distribution system.
- The strategically placed fault indicators will assist emergency responders to cases of trouble so we can quickly identify the location of faulted equipment, reducing outage time and improving customer service.
Some improvements we're making on local distribution facilities:
- Columbia County: Berwick, Bloomsburg and West Bloomsburg
- Cumberland County: Carlisle, Pennsboro and Wertzville, Silver Spring
- Dauphin County: Williamstown, Hummelstown, Lower Paxton and Susquehanna Township
- Lackawanna County: Greenfield and Brookside, Cedar Avenue, Scranton, Hamlin
- Lancaster County: Honeybrook, Strasburg, Mount Joy, Pequea Township and East Earl
- Lehigh County: Fogelsville, Upper Macungie Township
- Luzerne County: Humboldt and Fairview Township,
- Monroe County: Jackson Township, Stroudsburg
- Northampton County: Moore Township
- Northampton County: Mount Bethel
- Schuylkill County: Auburn
- Wayne County: Lake Township, Newfoundland and Paupack Township