System hardening initiatives strengthen assets like power poles and other infrastructure to reduce the chance of incidents and protect against extreme weather conditions. Risk modeling evaluates the consequences of potential issues with the system; then we undertake repair-and-replace programs to prevent and fix potential issues. We’re also implementing new technologies to help mitigate risks. While it’s impossible to eliminate every risk, we continue to maintain and upgrade our system and collaborate with other utilities to protect people and property.
Our work in this area includes:
- Focused inspections of assets like poles and wires in Wildfire Risk Zones to determine potential areas of concern.
- Replacing equipment and poles with new, safer technology and removing equipment that may create the potential for incidents that could lead to a wildfire.
- Analyzing the strength of transmission and distribution structures to withstand potential wind speeds and maintain adequate clearances.
- Conducting enhanced trimming of trees and other vegetation around our infrastructure.
Work Completed and Planned
|Visually inspected 100% (2,900 miles) of transmission line in Wildfire Risk Zone by ground and aerial patrol for higher-voltage lines (over 200 kilovolt)|
Inspected 125,000 distribution wood poles
Inspected high-risk distribution feeders
|Inspect 100% (2,900 miles) of transmission line in Wildfire Risk Zone annually|
Continue pole inspections and assessments of transmission lines through a variety of technologies, including drones
10,000+ distribution pole inspections using drones
Continue data collection to analyze pole integrity and necessary vegetation clearance
|Replaced 2,300 distribution wood poles in 2019 and 3,700 poles in 2020|
Repaired or replaced nearly 300 transmission assets with potential damage
Upgraded fuses and lightning arrestors
|Replace 4,500 distribution poles in 2021 and nearly 15,500 distribution poles by 2025|
Replace fuses with devices that improve safety
Continue to repair or replace damaged transmission assets as they are identified through the inspection process
Continue design work to support the planned rebuild of 195 miles of transmission line in the next 5 years
Replace the lines on 300 miles of distribution feeders in Wildfire Risk Zones
|Initiated substation relay upgrades|
Performed a wind strength analysis of transmission and distribution structures
|Ongoing substation relay upgrades that will allow for earlier fault detection|
Perform a wind strength analysis of distribution structures
|Removed or mitigated hazard trees and vegetation from 20 circuits|
Created defensible space around 1,500 distribution poles
|Continue hazard tree removal and creation of defensible space around poles where needed|
Convert right-of-way vegetation types near transmission lines