published Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

TVA expects damaged transmission power lines repaired by end of summer

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    Damaged transmission lines at TVA's Widows Creek Fossil Fuel Plant block Jackson County Highway 96 in Bridgeport. Staff Photo by Dan Henry - The Chattanooga Times Free Press

It will be the end of summer before TVA expects to have all of its damaged high-voltage transmission power lines repaired, Chief Operating Officer Bill McCollum said today.

In the meantime, Tennessee Valley Authority’s power grid “will not be as robust as it has been,” he said, but for now about 95 percent of the distributors — including EPB — that receive power from those transmission lines are again receiving electricity, and the rest should be in a matter of days.

TVA’s Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant shut down automatically when unprecedented storms and tornadoes knocked out more than 300 transmission power towers.

McCollum and TVA spokesman Ray Golden said the Browns Ferry will be restarted when TVA deems its rerouted and repaired power system to be stabilized.

The nuclear plant remains in “safe shutdown,” they said.

Until last night, the plant’s three reactors and spent fuel pools were cooled using diesel-powered generators.

TVA officials said the utility was able to restore off-site power to the nuclear plant Tuesday night and its nearly week-long “notification of unusual event” with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission was terminated.

about Pam Sohn...

Pam Sohn has been reporting or editing Chattanooga news for 25 years. A Walden’s Ridge native, she began her journalism career with a 10-year stint at the Anniston (Ala.) Star. She came to the Chattanooga Times Free Press in 1999 after working at the Chattanooga Times for 14 years. She has been a city editor, Sunday editor, wire editor, projects team leader and assistant lifestyle editor. As a reporter, she also has covered the police, ...

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