Pittsburgher heading up power restoration efforts in Puerto Rico
21 Octubre, 2017, 19:08
The single-award order also calls for the company to evaluate and repair equipment, as well as re-energize and recommission Puerto Rico's substations and switching stations.
Shipping of materials from the U.S. mainland for power restoration is such a massive job that a special port has been designated in Charleston, S.C. And the U.S. Department of Defense is assisting in the transport of the materials to the island, according to Army Corps Col. John P. Lloyd, 49, of Upper St. Clair.
Last month, the company signed a $300 million contract with the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) to repair and rebuild 100 miles of transmission lines on the western portion of the island, and hopes to start turning some of the lights back on in the coming days.
"We will do everything we can to support that timeline", Lloyd said in an interview with the Tribune-Review. Gen. Diana Holland, commander of the Army Corps of Engineers unit working to clear debris and restore the grid, with nearly 400 troops on the ground.
Formed in 2015 by Techmanski, Whitefish Energy began eying the former site of the Columbia Falls Aluminum Company as a potential campus to build a transformer manufacturing plant, in partnership with Brazil-based Comtrafo S.A., a leading transformer manufacturing firm. "We have been working in disaster-stricken locations for decades and we're pleased to work alongside the Army Corps of Engineers' South Atlantic Division".
House Speaker Paul Ryan seemed to express at least a willingness to consider helping Puerto Rico build back better when he visited the island this month.
Addressing concerns over its contract with PREPA, the public utility company known for its rolling blackouts and recent bankruptcy, Chiames said company officials are not concerned about financial issues. It passed out of the territory about 12 hours later near Barceloneta in the north, still with sustained winds of about 115 mph.
The work requires heavy trucks and excavation equipment, specialty trucks with massive extension ladders and helicopters, which use hoist lines to airlift crewmembers to remote sites. Many have resorted to using washboards, now frequently seen for sale along the side of the road, to clean clothes, and sleeping on their balconies and flocking to any open restaurants for relief from daytime temperatures above 90 degrees. "In some cases, the only way to access the towers is to airlift our crews in", Chiames said.
While Cobra crews are on the island, they will stay in a barge facility with its own power and freshwater generation and medical facilities. The onslaught was sufficient to knock down hundreds of transmission towers and thousands of distribution poles and lines. "We have to bring in the materials that have to be shipped and flown in to the island". "But people need to understand this is not like repairing electrical wires in a neighborhood or urban environment".
The office of Gov. Ricardo Rossello said Thursday that about 20 percent of the island has service and he has pledged to get that to 95 percent by Dec. 31.
"It would shock most Americans to see firsthand the devastation and the conditions that many of our fellow citizens of Puerto Rico are living under", he added.