NewsPinellas County


New 'self-healing' power lines help electricity stay on during outages

Posted at 4:57 PM, Aug 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-01 18:36:46-04

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — New technology in the Tampa Bay area could help keep your lights and air conditioning on even when there are power outages near you.

Duke Energy is installing new "self-healing" equipment to its power lines that redirects energy in the event of an outage.

"The easiest way to think about it is much like your GPS system in your car that reroutes you through bad traffic. This can actually reroute our energy," said Ana Gibbs, Duke Energy Spokesperson.

David Garner lives in the neighborhood where the new system is being installed. He says we take electricity for granted and remembers the days when the power would go out often.

"It was always a long wait, you know. We just had to wait it out until it came back on," said Garner

But, it's gotten a lot better in recent years. Duke Energy says during thunderstorms when you see your power flash or go out for a few seconds, it is likely this new technology at work.

According to Duke, the new "self-healing" lines helped 200,000 customers avoid outages last year.

Duke says right now 34% of their customers in the state are covered by this new technology and their goal is to have 80% using the “self-healing” power lines in the next 10 years.