Archive for Thursday, January 31, 2008

Transformer gets attention

January 31, 2008

A glitch in a transformer Friday brought the old downtown power plant back online while repairs were being made.

"We had to do some maintenance on the transformer behind the old power plant," said City Administrator Jeff Dingman. "This transformer ties the old plant to the substation. The downtown plant was put in operation to carry the Baker load and the downtown load while the maintenance was being performed."

While city crews were doing routine maintenance, a problem with the transformer was discovered.

"The issue with the transformer was that a bushing had sprung a leak and was leaking oil," said Dingman. "Not so much as hazardous, yet, but enough to be noticeable. As I understand it, they had to drain the oil, replace the bushing and then fill it back up."

The downtown plant isn't used very often anymore, but is kept up and fired up monthly to make sure everything is working. It proved to be beneficial in this case that the plant could carry the load.

"If the old plant couldn't have handled the load, we would have had to do something different," he said. "The load this time of the year on those feeders is well within manageable levels for that plant."

Dingman also pointed out that if the old plant wasn't functional, there wouldn't have been a problem with the transformer.

"Looking at it another way, if we didn't have that plant operational, we likely wouldn't have that particular transformer around, anyway," he said.

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