EPB Says Smart Grid Paying Off Handsomely For Customers

Friday, January 18, 2013

EPB officials said Friday that its Smart Grid is paying off in spades for customers.

David Wade said in two recent incidents, the sophisticated grid that was installed thanks to a $111.6 million federal grant saved the day.

He said during a fierce noon windstorm this week there were downed lines that briefly put 3,500 customers offline. But he said were it not for the Smart Grid, another 8,000 would have lost power.

Mr. Wade noted that is a 70-percent success rate.

Also, he said on Monday a large tree fell on Pine Ridge Road and downed a 46,000-volt line that serves three substations and 11,258 customers.

Mr. Wade said the Smart Grid went to work redirecting power supplies and saved over 10,000 customers from losing electricity.

On the remaining customers, he said a dispatcher was able to remotely fix the problem.

In the old days, he said, "It would have taken quite a while to locate and fix all the 38 switches that were involved."

Harold DePriest, EPB president, said it is estimated that the Smart Grid has a $50 million-$60 million benefit annually in saving customers from losing power and productivity.

"That's large," he said.

Joe Ferguson, EPB board chairman, said, "That's why we call it the Smart Grid."

He added, "The investment is paying off handsomely."

Greg Eaves, EPB finance director, said $105.8 million of the grant amount has been spent. He said EPB plans to apply for the remainder of the grant funding through an extension of the deadline.

"We won't leave any money on the table," he said.

Mr. DePriest said a group of engineers from Nippon T&T (Japanese equivalent of AT&T) is coming to the EPB to study the Smart Grid.

Also, Harvard Business School researchers are planning a case study of EPB.

 


Woman's Body Found Floating In Hiwassee River

A woman's body was spotted floating in the Hiwassee River in Polk County on Saturday afternoon. Crews said it appeared the woman had been dead for some time. The 911 call came in shortly before 4:30 p.m.. The TBI was called in to help in the investigation. The body has not yet been identified.. (click for more)

Woman Whose Car Landed On Tracks Below Wilcox Boulevard Viaduct Sues City

A woman whose car went off the Wilcox Boulevard Viaduct and landed on railroad tracks below has sued the city of Chattanooga. Rebecca Thomas-Winkler said the bridge is in poor and substandard condition and the guard rail was inadequate.  The suit says on Aug. 24, 2013, Ms. Winkler was traveling east on Wilcox Boulevard at about 12:30 p.m. She was crossing the bridge that ... (click for more)

Better Plan For Walnut Street Hotel

Mitch Patel and his Vision Hospitality Group have unveiled a revised plan for a hotel on Walnut Street. It is much better than the one proposed two years ago. By having no curb cuts on Walnut Street, it makes that special block near the bridge more inviting and safer for pedestrians. Deliveries would be off Riverfront Parkway and hotel access (valet parking) would be off Aquarium ... (click for more)

Thanks For Making The Southern Brewers Festival A Success

Now that the dust has settled I'd like to thank Chattanooga for supporting the Southern Brewers Festival and making it yet another very successful event.    For those who do not know - the SBF benefits the Chattanooga chapter of Kids on the Block and the Chattanooga Community Kitchen.  As a partner helping the SBF with volunteers, sponsorships and the overall production ... (click for more)

Ex-Ooltewah All-American Jacques Smith released By Falcons

Former Ooltewah Owls All-American and Tennessee Vols defensive standout Jacques Smith has been released by the Atlanta Falcons, who are 10 cuts from reaching their 53-man roster for the 2014 season. Wide receiver Jeremy Ebert and tight end Mickey Shuler were also released. Smith, an undrafted free agent, is said to be a "viable candidate" for the Falcons' practice squad ... (click for more)

Baylor Comeback Swamps Webb, 34-7

Baylor lost a fumble on the third play of the game and the visiting Webb Spartans scored five plays later, but the Red Raiders came storming back to win their second-straight game, 34-7, over the D-II, Class A two-time defending state champions. Quarterback Nick Tiano, who has already committed to Mississippi State, hurled two touchdown passes and scored a third on a sneak from ... (click for more)