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Malfunctioning transmission line at substation causes power outage in Ohio

SUBNET Solutions Inc | Tuesday, June 07, 2011

The continued investment into the development of the U.S. smart grid is of the utmost importance, according to officials, but it presents a host of potential problems that utilities must work through. In Cincinnati, a problem at an aging automated substation left residents without power, illustrating the need for updated critical infrastructure. 

The Kentucky Post reports that an issue at an automated substation owned and operated by utility Duke Energy left more than 20,000 of the company's customers without power this week. The incident, company representatives said, was traced to a transmission line in Hamilton County, where thousands of residents were without power.

Residents were angered by the disruption to the power supply network as temperatures rose higher than 90 degrees on Monday. The utility, however, was able to restore power to a majority of its customers. By Monday night, only about 500 homes were still without electricity.

Duke Energy spokeswoman Sally Thelan said that a transmission line at one of its substations malfunctioned, causing the system to short. Thelan said that following a major event like a storm or a transmission line issue, it sometimes takes more time to completely repair lost power.

One of the many benefits of the smart grid is that it enables utilities to more quickly identify, diagnose and fix power supply disruptions.

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