JCP&L Posts Best Service Reliability Results in More than a DecadeCompany Reliability Results for 2015 Showed an 18 Percent Decrease in Number of Outages Customers Experienced from the Previous Year
MORRISTOWN, N.J., Jan. 20, 2016 -- As a result of an ongoing infrastructure investment campaign, Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) in 2015 posted its best service reliability numbers in 13 years, which included an 18 percent reduction in the number of outages customers experienced the previous year. Last year, JCP&L customers overall averaged less than one outage for the year, with the average outage time being a little over an hour in duration.
"Over the past 10 years our company has invested more than $2.5 billion on enhancing our electric system, and the work resulted in 2015 producing the best service reliability our customers have experienced in more than a decade," said Jim Fakult, president of JCP&L. "Whether it's additional upgrades to our transmission and distribution systems, training new line and substation workers, or doing ongoing tree trimming work, we will continue with our efforts to enhance service reliability for our customers."
In 2015, JCP&L spent more than $247 million on key projects to enhance customer service reliability, including:
- Beginning construction of a $37 million, multi-year substation expansion project to install voltage regulating equipment at a substation in Wharton in Morris County.
- Completing construction of a $13 million expansion of a substation in West Amwell in Hunterdon County.
- Constructing a $7 million transmission line at a substation in Old Bridge in Middlesex County.
- Completing $6 million of equipment upgrades on 94 circuits across the company's 13 county service area.
- Trimming trees to maintain proper clearances along nearly 3,300 miles of power lines at a cost of approximately $24 million.
- Completing a $1.8 million transmission line from a substation in North Branch to a substation in Lebanon in Hunterdon County.
- Completing a $1.4 million upgrade of three 230-kilovolt circuit breakers at a substation in East Hanover in Morris County.
- Completing a $1 million transmission line in the Wharton area of Morris County.
- Constructing a new transmission line at a substation in Toms River in Ocean County.
- Upgrading protective relay devices at substations in Neptune in Ocean County.
Planning also is underway for the service reliability projects that will be completed in 2016, including new transmission lines and circuit upgrades.
JCP&L also teamed with Brookdale Community College in Lincroft, N.J., and Raritan Valley Community College in Branchburg, N.J., in 2015 to successfully reinstitute its Power Systems Institute Program to train the next generation of line and substation workers. The program combines classroom learning with hands-on training and students who successfully complete the program earn an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Electric Utility Technology. Recruiting efforts are underway for the next class that will begin school this fall. Information about the Power Systems Institute is available at www.firstenergycorp.com/psi or by calling 800-829-6801.
In 2015, JCP&L was recognized as the "Business Leadership of the Year Honoree" by the New Jersey Conference of Mayors. The award recognized the company's continuing efforts to establish strong working relationships with mayors across its service territory.
JCP&L also continued to use several unique apps to more efficiently assess damage to the electrical system and dispatch crews to make repairs in the wake of major storm events. Employees in the field can use this new mobile device technology to automatically enter damage information into the company's outage management system which helps restore the most customers to service in the shortest amount of time.
JCP&L, a FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE) subsidiary, serves 1.1 million New Jersey customers in the counties of Burlington, Essex, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren. Follow JCP&L on Twitter @JCP_L, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/JCPandL or online at www.jcp-l.com.
Editor's Note: Photos of some of JCP&L's service reliability enhancements from 2015 are available for download on Flickr.
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costs being higher than anticipated and the success of our policies to control costs and to mitigate low energy, capacity and market prices; other legislative and regulatory changes, and revised environmental requirements, including, but not limited to, the effects of the United States Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Power Plan, coal combustion residuals regulations, Cross-State Air Pollution Rule and Mercury and Air Toxics Standards programs, including our estimated costs of compliance, Clean Water Act waste water effluent limitations for power plants, and Clean Water Act 316(b) water intake regulation; the uncertainty of the timing and amounts of the capital expenditures that may arise in connection with any litigation, including New Source Review litigation, or potential regulatory initiatives or rulemakings (including that such initiatives or rulemakings could result in our decision to deactivate or idle certain generating units); the uncertainties associated with the deactivation of certain older regulated and competitive fossil units, including the impact on vendor commitments, and as they relate to the reliability of the transmission grid, the timing thereof; the impact of other future changes to the operational status or availability of our generating units and any capacity performance charges associated with unit unavailability; adverse regulatory or legal decisions and outcomes with respect to our nuclear operations (including, but not limited to the revocation or non-renewal of necessary licenses, approvals or operating permits by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission or as a result of the incident at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant); issues arising from the indications of cracking in the shield building at Davis-Besse; the risks and uncertainties associated with litigation, arbitration, mediation and like proceedings, including, but not limited to, any such proceedings related to vendor commitments; the impact of labor disruptions by our unionized workforce; replacement power costs being higher than anticipated or not fully hedged; the ability to comply with applicable state and federal reliability standards and energy efficiency and peak demand reduction mandates; changes in customers' demand for power, including, but not limited to, changes resulting from the implementation of state and federal energy efficiency and peak demand reduction mandates; the ability to accomplish or realize anticipated benefits from strategic and financial goals, including, but not limited to, the ability to continue to reduce costs and to successfully execute our financial plans designed to improve our credit metrics and strengthen our balance sheet through, among other actions, our previously-implemented dividend reduction, our cash flow improvement plan and our other proposed capital raising initiatives; our ability to improve electric commodity margins and the impact of, among other factors, the increased cost of fuel and fuel transportation on such margins; changing market conditions that could affect the measurement of certain liabilities and the value of assets held in our Nuclear Decommissioning Trusts, pension trusts and other trust funds, and cause us and/or our subsidiaries to make additional contributions sooner, or in amounts that are larger than currently anticipated; 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CONTACT: Ron Morano, (973) 401-8097