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Passmore substation work improves electrifying situation in Valley

Power service in the southern reaches of the Slocan Valley just got a little better.

The Passmore substation project work currently underway is being done to improve the electricity reliability for customers located along Highway 6 and through the communities of Slocan Park, Winlaw, Slocan and Valhalla, said FortisBC spokeperson Neal Pobran.

“Since the transmission line north of the Passmore substation follows the highway in a very tight corridor, it was prone to unplanned outages,” he said.

Under the old system, an unplanned outage anywhere along the 63 kilovolt transmission line (19 line) which serves the Passmore Substation, caused the entire circuit to trip off, meaning power outages to people in the southern Slocan Valley.

The work now complete at Passmore substation included the addition of a circuit breaker on line 19, said Pobran.

The new circuit breaker will provide more reliability as it will sectionalize the transmission line (line 19) which will reduce unnecessary outages to the Passmore customers in the event of a fault on the line anywhere north of Passmore.

“FortisBC is also expanding the space around the substation so, if in the future should we need to park a mobile substation, we would have the ability to do so,” said Pobran.

The project is expected to cost approximately $2 million, he said, part of the 2009/2010 capital plan that had already received approval from the B.C. Utilities Commission.

Meaning, the rate increase for customers in the region would have already been factored in as part of the company’s revenue requirements.

“And now that this work is completed, FortisBC electricity customers in the Slocan Valley should experience improved reliability meaning fewer power outages and quicker restoration time,” he said.