Met-Ed Completing Long-Term Infrastructure Improvement PlanWork in 2016 Includes Adding Equipment and Installing Remote Control Devices to Reduce Number and Duration of Power Outages
READING, Pa., Dec. 1, 2016 -- Metropolitan Edison Company (Met-Ed) is completing work on approximately $7.5 million of electric system projects as part of its 2016 Long-Term Infrastructure Improvement Plan to reduce the number and duration of service interruptions experienced by the company's 560,000 customers.
The projects include installing enhanced protective devices on wires and poles, replacing or upgrading electric lines, adding other special equipment, and installing automated and remote control devices.
"These projects benefit customers by complementing the work we already do each year to enhance the reliability of our electric system," said Ed Shuttleworth, regional president of Met-Ed. "Our goal is to make our system the best it can be when it comes to limiting the number of outages our customers experience."
Met-Ed's Long-Term Infrastructure Improvement Plan was approved earlier this year by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission. This five-year, $43-million program will target distribution infrastructure projects to enhance service reliability in the Met-Ed area through 2020.
Projects completed this year in the Met-Ed service area include:
- Replacement of more than 1,600 porcelain protective switches on poles and wires with new polymer devices. The switches – known as "cutouts" – automatically open up when a system irregularity is detected, serving to protect the electrical equipment and limit the number of customers affected by an outage. In 2016, protective switches were replaced on six circuits primarily in Boyertown, Reading, Easton and York.
- Addition of new connection points where circuits come together, along with installing new devices, such as fuses and automated switches, to help limit the number of customers affected when an outage occurs. The work is designed to enhance reliability for Met-Ed customers in the Boyertown area.
- Installation of radio-controlled switches on electric circuits. These devices can be operated remotely from the company dispatch center, allowing operators to restore power more quickly and efficiently than dispatching a crew to investigate. Met-Ed is completing this work at almost 70 locations throughout its service area.
- Completion of a major line upgrade project in the Stroudsburg area. This work included installing news poles, wire, and other equipment as needed. In addition, cable was replaced on another circuit in the Stroudsburg area to enhance circuit performance.
- Replacement of 4,300 feet of cable in a Reading-area underground development.
- Installation of more than 1,000 new fuses on 91 circuits throughout Met-Ed's service area.
In 2017, Met-Ed is expected to spend an additional $9 million on similar Long-Term Infrastructure Improvement Plan projects.
Met-Ed, a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE), serves approximately 560,000 customers in 15 Pennsylvania counties. Follow Met-Ed on Twitter @Met Ed and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MetEdElectric.
FirstEnergy is dedicated to safety, reliability and operational excellence. Its 10 electric distribution companies form one of the nation's largest investor-owned electric systems, serving customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia, Maryland and New York. The company's transmission subsidiaries operate more than 24,000 miles of transmission lines that connect the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions. Follow FirstEnergy on Twitter @FirstEnergyCorp or online at www.firstenergycorp.com.
Editor's Note: Photos of some of the equipment that was installed as part of Met-Ed's 2016 Long-Term Infrastructure Improvement Plan are available for download on Flickr.
CONTACT: Scott Surgeoner, (610) 921-6785