High voltage wires surrounded by thousands of acres of dry land is already a risky combination, but add in the threat of hurricane force winds, extreme floods, and other natural disasters and suddenly the risk becomes more of a ticking time bomb.
Downed power lines and exploding transformers pose a serious threat to the safety of people and land, especially when the damage could have been prevented with the right equipment in place.
When disaster strikes, it’s critical to make sure your power lines are secured by strong equipment that not only keeps your electrical components safe but also reduces the risk of damage spreading to surrounding areas; affecting homes and wildlife alike.
Utility companies are not strangers to maintenance failures, and too often those failures end up causing costly consequences for both the companies and their customers.
In April, California’s Public Utilities Commission fined a utility giant $8.3 million for failing to maintain a power line that sparked the fire that killed two, destroyed 549 homes and charred nearly 71,000 acres.
And in 1994, the utility was fined nearly $30 million by state regulators and found guilty of 739 counts of negligence after trees touched its high-voltage wires in the Sierra foothills. According to prosecutors, the company had diverted about $80 million from its tree-cutting program into profits.
Multiple wildfires have been linked to large California utilities, including a 22 days long fire in Amador County that took place in September of 2015.
It’s as sure a sign as any that now is the time for utility companies across the United States to take steps to prevent equipment failures and protect themselves from costly damages.
By using equipment designed to protect against system failures, utility companies can minimize and, at times, eliminate the damage caused by failing electrical components, downed power lines and exploding transformers.
It’s hard to stop the spread of wildfires, and it’s hard to predict when wind gusts will reach hurricane forces greater than 75 miles per hour; however, utilities have a responsibility to use products with preventative measures in place.
At DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions, we believe that the right preventative measures start with product designs that consider the most extreme conditions and how those products affect and protect the surrounding environment.
The engineering and manufacturing teams at DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions considered the elements and extremes faced by utility companies’ structures in a variety of conditions, and designed the UltravexR crossarm to provide superior strength and support.
In testing the UltravexR crossarm, we applied loads to reach the full capacity of the crossarm and establish its breaking point.
Even under the pressure of ultimate load testing, we have never broken an UltravexR crossarm in half. Our arms always fail in shear, so they keep their shape after failure and continue to perform, just at suboptimal levels. Even after failure, the UltravexR crossarm can continue to hold a few thousand pounds per side, so our clients have confidence that the crossarm will not fall off the pole even if the rest of the structure fails.
The UltravexR crossarm is designed for maximum safety and protection of utility structures:
Our customers trust that in the event of a failure in extreme conditions, our crossarm is strong enough to resist drastic damage and will stay intact; increasing reliability and avoiding catastrophic failure of your structures or the loss of your power lines.
For more information about the preventative features behind our crossarm products, the UltravexR Crossarm or how DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions can better secure your utility infrastructure, fill out the form on our contact page.