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animal-caused outages
Darren Barnett

Importance of Testing for Animal Mitigation Guards

Animal Mitigation guards should be tested to demonstrate they can accomplish the intended function of preventing wildlife contact with energized parts. IEEE 1656-2010 “Guide for Testing the Electrical, Mechanical, and Durability Performance of Wildlife Protective Devices on Overhead Power Distribution Systems Rated up to 38 kV”, includes the tests described below for this purpose. 5.2

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The Drive Toward Zero Animal-Caused Outages

Is it even possible to suggest that you can drive toward zero animal-caused outages? Like many Canadian utilities, AltaLink’s experience indicated that nearly 20 percent of all outages were animal-caused.14 AltaLink’s animal-caused outages were specifically derived from bird contact on its low-voltage equipment, a situation that had become a rising trend in the early 2000s.15

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Risk and Asset Management Strategies

Good data provides the ability to make appropriate decisions regarding an animal-caused outage problem. Specific animal-caused outage metrics need to be identified and tracked during monthly asset management meetings similar to other operational reliability measures, such as System Average Interruption Duration Index (“SAIDI”), System Average Interruption Frequency Index (“SAIFI”) and Customer Average Interruption Duration Index

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Asset Management Planning for Wildlife Outage Mitigation Planning

So, what should utilities do in a situation where they are having an animal-caused outage issue and do not know where to start when they are planning to install a new substation? An animal-caused outage mitigation mindset must exist within all levels of a utility’s asset management process in order to completely manage the issue

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The Evolution and Application of Outage Mitigation Methods

So how do you best protect against animal-based threats, and is it even possible to achieve zero animal-caused outages once applied? IEEE-1264TM, “IEEE Guide for Animal Deterrents for Electric Power Supply Substations,” discusses many strategies to combat the issue, and this standard examines various strategies deployed, including simulated natural predators, noisemakers, cover-up materials, animal fences

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The Cost of Outages. How Much Damage Can an Animal Cause?

Animal-caused electric outages, like all other outages, can cause direct and consequential damage (such as business interruption) to electric utility facilities, C&I customers, residential utility customers and critical public facilities. Impact on Electric Utilities and Commercial and Industrial Companies That Own Substations Electric utilities face a wide range of potential impacts from animal-caused contact outages

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How Do Animal-Caused Outages Occur?

Why do animals pose a threat in the first place? Why would they even be attracted to energized electrical equipment in substations that have fences and complicated climbing structures? Animals seek out substations for the promise of food, shelter, warmth, perching and even general curiosity. In fact, these drivers are why animals in open field

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The Impact of Animal-Caused Outages

The growing reliance on energy and the implications of its interruption in residential homes, commercial and industrial facilities, and government agencies places an increasing burden on utilities to provide a more reliable power supply than ever experienced in the history of the electric system Find out which four Areas that power outages hit the hardest and how it could impact you!

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About the Blogger

Darren Barnett

This post is the first in a series of seven excerpts from an electric utility industry white paper prepared by FTI Consulting, entitled, THE CASE FOR ELIMINATING ANIMAL-CAUSED OUTAGES IN ELECTRIC SUBSTATIONS AND ON POWERLINES. The full white paper may be downloaded by clicking here.

Darren Barnett, VP MEPP (Manufacturer’s Equipment Protection Program) / Technical Services, holds a degree in Electrical Engineering Technology from Louisiana Tech University and has over 28 years of experience in the electric power distribution industry. Darren’s career started as a design engineer for a major transformer and components manufacturer. From there he advanced to positions of increasing responsibility, including Quality Assurance Manager, Engineering Manager and Vice President of Components Operations. Darren is an active member of IEEE and was on the committee that developed the 1656 -2010 testing guide for wildlife mitigation products.