Hardening the network

7 months ago

Extreme weather in 2016/17 resulted in significant network outages and loss of supply to customers for extended periods of time. Customers, particularly in regional areas, are often supplied via overhead bare-wire conductor making them more likely to be affected by storm activity. Customers located in heavily vegetated areas are also more likely to be affected by strong winds and storms.

In our 2020-25 Revised Regulatory Proposal, we are proposing targeted programs to reduce power outages and improve reliability caused by severe weather events. One way of doing this is to finalise our ‘Hardening the Network’ program - which we developed in response to customer feedback. This program has been ongoing since 2015. Once (if) completed, this program will reduce the length of outages by two hours each year for around 50,000 customers in targeted regional areas across SA.

In its Draft Decision, the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) did not support our proposed ‘hardening’ program. Following the AER’s Draft Decision, SA Power Networks consulted further with our Customer Consultative Panel (SAPN CCP) and key stakeholders, and received strong feedback from several stakeholders that the Hardening the Network program should be re-submitted to address the ongoing reliability concerns of pockets of customers (especially business customers), who are impacted by weather events.

We'd like to hear from you - comment below to show your support of this program.
Categories: Hardening the Network, Improving network reliability, hardening
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Tony 6 months ago
Living in Mt Barker, in a newer estate with underground power lines, we rarely have any outages, and usually because of a supply issue feeding in from another area. This is in stark contrast to our previous place in Crafers, where outages were often a monthly, if not weekly event, due to possums and birds caught in the overhead lines, or tree branches coming down in every storm. There you also lived with the constant threat of fires caused by falling branches bringing down lines and starting a fire, as has recently happened at Cudlee Creek. Undergrounding is ultimately the safest and most reliable method, but the cost through the hills would be astronomical, and physically impossible in some areas. Perhaps more of the main feeder lines running along main roads need to be undergrounded to improve reliability and as a safety measure.As far a load shedding goes, it must be strictly implemented on a rotational basis so that everyone shares the burden, and no-one gets unfairly affected on a constant basis.
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Linda johnson 7 months ago
Be nice if you would install surge arrestees to prevent the bad experience I recently had where a surge took out the circuit boards in my hot water service,fridge and split system.SA Power refused to accept responsibility and told me it was " unpredictable" and therefore they were not responsible. My insurance did finally pay for repair and replacement but I had to pay an excess. Any other item I purchase has liability if the item fails but not the service that I pay a big chunk of my pension for. As SAPower has a monopoly I can't shop elsewhere but I can share with everyone my bad experience and now I have to try and find a way to fund a surge arrester installation.
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Jade 7 months ago
Where is the hardening the network program? Where is the planning for online user interface? There should be a link to the program outline and plan. With attached data, that formed the backbone of the program. Transparency is key to engage the consumers here.
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Trevor 7 months ago
Concerned with frequent outages in Beaumont. Roadside Candle Pine 🌲 at 7-9 Fernleigh Ave Beaumont harbours rats , possums and other vermin- hence poses a threat to electricity reliability growing through the powerlines.
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Donny 7 months ago
I guess it’s not rocket science but all comes down to $$. Where you can; built up areas with roads and pathways it needs to be buried underground (like almost every other civilised country), where you can’t just make sure those lines are not feeders to the main built up areas or invest the money to get them under.Multiple feeds with capacity to cope with an above-ground weather impact would also make the grid more reliable.Current set up is susceptible to weather, trees, vehicle impact ....underground all day long!
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David Leske 7 months ago
Our power reliability in Evanston Park is quite good and doesn't need hardening. Our longest outages have been planned ones due to roadworks.
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Berta 7 months ago
Fairness in load shedding is paramount It is rare that the ‘well to do’ suburbs seem hid with the inconvenience of power lossPlay fair
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Jody Playford 7 months ago
We would be extremely grateful if the power lines could be removed from being so close to our house. They are literally 2m from our main roof, a design floor from the days when power poles were first introduced. It seems it’s not only invasive and incredibly inconvenient from our end but extremely dangerous. SA Power are regularly called out to fix the issues with it. I’m sure there is a better way. You have my support if it involves action including this power pole at 70c Crescent Drive.
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Mitch Hills 7 months ago
The AER report states: "This draft decision allows SA Power Networks to recover $3,905.3 million from its customers for the 2020–25 period.This is $309.2 million less than the $4,214.5 million SA Power Networks proposed". This is before actual/projected costs, but is an indication of its operating budget. An average of around $800 million per year.With this in mind, let's look at page 100 of the 2018 Annual Report of Spark Infrastructure, a part-owner of SAPN.SA Power Networks, Net profitYear ended 31/12/2017 $221.8 millionYear ended 31/12/2018 $221.3 millionYou're kidding, right?!SAPN can stop gouging SA customers and pay for the network hardening from profits.
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Edna Loy 7 months ago
I find this a bit bizarre that there is need for a discussion on your proposal to reduce outages. Your core business is to supply electricity. You simply should just be getting on with making it a stable service because that is what consumers pay for.
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Andrew Grace 7 months ago
As a customer in Hallett Cove I have noticed an increase in power outages over the last 12-24 months. There are scheduled power outages due to tidying up lines and other times vegetation and these often last longer than first forecast. The most recent schedule outage resulted in me needing to drive to the local service station to purchase ice and put it in the fridge as I had bought consumables and timed my shopping around the forecast schedule. The food would have spoiled if I purchase the ice.There are also increased instances of interrupted supply to the power network due to unscheduled interruptions, many occurring overnight. This affects clocks and other plugged in appliances as well as security lights in the neighbourhood. I would support Hallett Cove (west of the train station) moving to an underground supply system
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Nathaniel Nowicki 7 months ago
I think identifying areas most effected by then Xtreme weather and perhaps finding strategies such as maybe under ground powerlines in those areas for example to minimise effect in adverse weather
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Kohlstein organic estates Pty.Ltd 7 months ago
Here in the southern mallee, Parilla area, which one of the major food growing ag hubs we probly won't even get upgrades or reduced power bills, and yet we just have to put up with power outages each year. Due to the populous, people. And mostly farmers our capita of customers in the area. We are very important and should also be treated the same way as city folks. If we all pulled the plug n left, our shops who we supply with food etc will be empty except for imported foods. Its just not good enough, not acceptable. Its hard enough to be a primary producer especially these days with our droughts n bad weather..
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Greg Neumann 7 months ago
More maintenance would help .
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damian 7 months ago
Making solar batteries cheaper or free for myself as I'm on the disability pension is the only way to sustain constant power! They are far to expensive and unobtainable for people on welfare payments
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Mummu 7 months ago
Regional South Australia especially, urgently need its ageing electricity powerlines updated and upgraded. Where there are single phase power lines these must be upgradedto the standard of the rest of the State.
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Sue Lawrie 7 months ago
We are on the Bolingbroke swer line south of Tumby Bay we loose our power every few weeks for NO reason and sometimes it takes 3 days for power to be restored and the reason is - No reason why we lost our power. It’s not good enough when the infrastructure is aging and nothing been done about it. We are feed up with the constant outages
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Hjeana 7 months ago
Can't say I've been affected too much, except for a couple of times last year, when some work was done in this street, but notification prior to those times anyway. However I was EXTREMELY affected when I moved into my home here on 20th of April last year & was without power for 6 days & nights, due to NO metre put into box prior to me moving into my home. Very very angry about that, still.
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Andrea Catanzariti 7 months ago
Yes what a fantastic idea , cause when we have all these black outs we actually have no water either.. so if we were in trouble with a fire or anything we cannot protect any thing with the hose .. can’t flush the toilet or even wash ya hands .. I’m all for supporting this if we have less blackouts at two wells .. last blackout was a 42 degree day .. no air con was terrible and a severe fire danger warning
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Tiff Firth 7 months ago
I very much support the 'hardening of the Network'. In 2019 we have lost power twice due to extremes weather and SA Power Networks quite rightly turned off the power due to high fire risk. ie Lower Eyre Peninsula in November 2019. And this was still in Spring and not usually fire season. Anything to ensure the reliability of power to Lower Eyre Peninsula I fully endorse.
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