MORRISTOWN, N.J., May 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- With the upcoming hot summer months expected to produce higher electric usage, Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) has completed numerous projects and inspections across its 13-county service area to enhance service reliability. The work included upgrading transmission and substation equipment, upgrading circuits and modernizing distribution equipment, and trimming trees along 1,500 miles of distribution and transmission lines.
"Targeting the completion of significant enhancements, upgrades and repairs each year prior to the start of the summer season provides a robust electrical system and delivers quality service," said James Fakult, president of JCP&L. "The projects we have completed increase the reliability and flexibility of our system as the summer season arrives and customers use more electricity."
Some of the JCP&L projects that have been completed include:
- Upgrading a 34.5 kilovolt line out of a substation in Wharton to increase transmission capacity in Morris County.
- Upgrading a 34.5 kilovolt line out of a substation in Phillipsburg to increase transmission capacity and provide additional system flexibility in Warren County.
- Installing a new 230 kilovolt transformer at a substation in West Amwell to increase transmission capacity and add resiliency in Hunterdon County.
- Upgrading 230 kilovolt circuit breakers at a substation in East Hanover to enhance transmission reliability in Morris County.
- Installing backup 230 kilovolt automatic switching devices at a substation in Red Bank to enhance transmission reliability in Monmouth County.
- Modernizing circuits in Lakewood by implementing automatic circuit switching to transfer customers to adjacent circuits and minimize outages.
- Installing a new 34.5 kilovolt line and switches at a substation in Toms River to increase transmission capacity in Ocean County.
- Completing 42 distribution circuit upgrades, including 15 in Sussex County, installing new wire, animal guards, lightning arrestors, fuses, crossarms, spacer cable brackets and switches to limit the frequency and duration of power outages.
Cost-effective helicopter patrols are completing inspections on more than 757 miles of transmission lines located in the JCP&L area. The inspections are designed to look for damaged wire, broken cross arms, failed insulators, and other hardware problems not easily detected from the ground. Any potential reliability issues identified during the inspection will be addressed immediately.
On the ground, the summer readiness inspections include using "thermovision" cameras to capture infrared images that can detect potential problems with JCP&L substation equipment such as transformers and capacitors. By identifying hot spots, maintenance and repairs can be conducted prior to a power outage occurring.
Inspections have also been completed on 88 circuits, 4,800 capacitors and nearly 1,200 recloser devices.
The completed projects are part of JCP&L's previously announced plans to spend about $267 million in 2015 on projects and other work to enhance and maintain a strong electrical system and help meet future load growth.
JCP&L is a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE). JCP&L serves 1.1 million New Jersey customers in the counties of Burlington, Essex, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren. Follow JCP&L on Twitter @JCP_L, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/JCPandL, or online at www.jcp-l.com.
Editor's Note: JCP&L summer preparedness work photos are available for download on Flickr.
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Forward-looking statements involve estimates, assumptions, known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, which may include the following: the speed and nature of increased competition in the electric utility industry, in general, and the retail sales market in particular; the ability to experience growth in the Regulated Distribution and Regulated Transmission segments and to successfully implement our revised sales strategy for the Competitive Energy Services segment; the accomplishment of our regulatory and operational goals in connection with our transmission investment plan, pending transmission rate case and the effectiveness of our repositioning strategy to reflect a more regulated business profile; changes in assumptions regarding economic conditions within our territories, assessment of the reliability of our transmission system, or the availability of capital or other resources supporting identified transmission investment opportunities; the impact of the regulatory process on the pending matters at the federal level and in the various states in which we do business including, but not limited to, matters related to rates and the Electric Security Plan IV in Ohio; the impact of the federal regulatory process on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)-regulated entities and transactions, in particular FERC regulation of wholesale energy and capacity markets, including PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (PJM) markets and FERC-jurisdictional wholesale transactions; FERC regulation of cost-of-service rates, including FERC Opinion No. 531's revised Return on Equity methodology for FERC jurisdictional wholesale generation and transmission utility service; and FERC's compliance and enforcement activity, including compliance and enforcement activity related to North American Electric Reliability Corporation's mandatory reliability standards; the uncertainties of various cost recovery and cost allocation issues resulting from American Transmission Systems Incorporated's realignment into PJM; economic or weather conditions affecting future sales and margins such as a polar vortex or other significant weather events, and all associated regulatory events or actions; changing energy, capacity and commodity market prices including, but not limited to, coal, natural gas and oil, and their availability and impact on retail margins; the continued ability of our regulated utilities to recover their costs; costs being higher than anticipated and the success of our policies to control costs and to mitigate low energy, capacity and market prices; other legislative and regulatory changes, and revised environmental requirements, including, but not limited to, proposed greenhouse gases emission and water discharge regulations and the effects of the United States Environmental Protection Agency's coal combustion residuals regulations, Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, Mercury and Air Toxics Standards, including our estimated costs of compliance, and Clean Water Act 316(b) water intake regulation; the uncertainty of the timing and amounts of the capital expenditures that may arise in connection with any litigation, including New Source Review litigation, or potential regulatory initiatives or rulemakings (including that such initiatives or rulemakings could result in our decision to deactivate or idle certain generating units); the uncertainties associated with the deactivation of certain older regulated and competitive fossil units, including the impact on vendor commitments, and the timing thereof as they relate to the reliability of the transmission grid; the impact of other future changes to the operational status or availability of our generating units; adverse regulatory or legal decisions and outcomes with respect to our nuclear operations (including, but not limited to the revocation or non-renewal of necessary licenses, approvals or operating permits by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission or as a result of the incident at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant); issues arising from the indications of cracking in the shield building at Davis-Besse; the risks and uncertainties associated with litigation, arbitration, mediation and like proceedings, including, but not limited to, any such proceedings related to vendor commitments; the impact of labor disruptions by our unionized workforce; replacement power costs being higher than anticipated or not fully hedged; the ability to comply with applicable state and federal reliability standards and energy efficiency and peak demand reduction mandates; changes in customers' demand for power, including, but not limited to, changes resulting from the implementation of state and federal energy efficiency and peak demand reduction mandates; the ability to accomplish or realize anticipated benefits from strategic and financial goals, including, but not limited to, the ability to continue to reduce costs and to successfully execute our financial plans designed to improve our credit metrics and strengthen our balance sheet through, among other actions, our previously-implemented dividend reduction, our cash flow initiative project and our other proposed capital raising initiatives; our ability to improve electric commodity margins and the impact of, among other factors, the increased cost of fuel and fuel transportation on such margins; changing market conditions that could affect the measurement of certain liabilities and the value of assets held in our Nuclear Decommissioning Trusts, pension trusts and other trust funds, and cause us and/or our subsidiaries to make additional contributions sooner, or in amounts that are larger than currently anticipated; the impact of changes to material accounting policies; the ability to access the public securities and other capital and credit markets in accordance with our announced financial plans, the cost of such capital and overall condition of the capital and credit markets affecting us and our subsidiaries; actions that may be taken by credit rating agencies that could negatively affect us and/or our subsidiaries' access to financing, increase the costs thereof, and increase requirements to post additional collateral to support outstanding commodity positions, letters of credit and other financial guarantees; changes in national and regional economic conditions affecting us, our subsidiaries and/or our major industrial and commercial customers, and other counterparties with which we do business, including fuel suppliers; the impact of any changes in tax laws or regulations or adverse tax audit results or rulings; issues concerning the stability of domestic and foreign financial institutions and counterparties with which we do business; the risks associated with cyber-attacks on our electronic data centers that could compromise the information stored on our networks, including proprietary information and customer data; and the risks and other factors discussed from time to time in our United States Securities and Exchange Commission filings, and other similar factors. The foregoing review of factors should not be construed as exhaustive. New factors emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for management to predict all such factors, nor assess the impact of any such factor on FirstEnergy's business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements. FirstEnergy expressly disclaims any current intention to update, except as required by law, any forward-looking statements contained herein as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
SOURCE FirstEnergy Corp.