IntelliRupters don’t mind the rain. In fact, during the 2011 Labor Day weekend, a tropical storm dumped nearly ten inches of water on the scenic city. Nearly 64,000 homes and businesses would have been affected prior to distribution automation. However, even though the storm was still raging, the Smart Grid began the healing process. Instead, 25,000 of those customers either experienced nothing or had power restored without noticing any kind of significant interruption. Those numbers would have been even higher, except only 32% of the IntelliRupters were installed and configured at the time.
“This is a distinct benefit of the Smart Grid,” explains EPB Smart Grid Development Manager Jim Glass. “The trouble shooting and switching that used to take two trucks and a dispatcher an hour or more is automated, taking only one or two seconds.” That’s a mere blink of an eye. During this storm the EPB dispatch center handled 105 switching operations remotely. And, by utilizing the AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) system to verify that power had been restored, 140 truck rolls were completely avoided. Ultimately, this kind of automation and monitoring allows customers and employees to get back to their normal lives faster in addition to saving on costs associated with restoration.