The Public Service Commission Tuesday approved an emergency service plan to avert overloads on Utah Power equipment this summer in the southeast corner of the Salt Lake Valley.
According to Dave Eskelsen, Utah Power spokesman, the commission approved the plan subject to amendment. The commissioners asked that the utility give three notices to residents in the affected area. The first will be a notice left at the door and the other two will be mailed with bills. One of the notices will explain how residents can voluntarily cut down power usage.The plan is intended for an area east of State Street between 9800 South and 12400 South.
The utility said the greatest time of risk to both its equipment and that of customers is when the temperature reaches 92 degrees between 3 p.m. and 9 p.m. As usage exceeds the capacity of the utility's system it could heat up equipment. At the same time, voltage could decrease and cause damage to electrical motors on things such as air conditioners.
As a last resort, the utility has proposed rotating outages between neighborhoods of the affected area. Public service commissioners suggested the outages be rotated every few hours. The utility had proposed rotating power on a daily basis. A final order from the commission is expected to spell out the rotation.
Other elements of the plan include installing additional transformers and diesel-powered generators in Granite and Draper.
Utah Power said the emergency plan is needed because residents have stalled the building of a power substation and power lines in the Dimple Dell area. They are concerned about decreasing property values and possible health effects. Residents want the lines buried.