STARKVILLE — A large portion of Starkville Utilities Department customers should prepare for a brief power outage at 7 a.m. Saturday.
This planned outage, which should last approximately 15 minutes, is part of the transfer of the old southwest electrical substation to a new substation. Terry Kemp, general manager for SUD, said roughly two-thirds of the company’s customer base, mainly those in the southern portion of the city, will be affected.
SUD has been working with Tennessee Valley Authority on this project for almost eight years, Kemp said, with construction work lasting the last 18 months. He said the substation will create a surplus of energy to ensure growth and have a second connection from TVA which will improve the overall system reliability in customers.
“What this substation allows us to do is have a direct connection from TVA to our south side of Starkville, and we’ll have some from the north side as well,” Kemp said. “It will have more reliability, a capacity upgrade and improvement.”
TVA is a corporate U.S. agency that provides electricity for customers and local power companies and is one of SUD’s primary utility partners.
According to the SUD’s website, teams have been conducting tests since January as part of the commissioning plan. After Saturday, load-shifting procedures will begin to balance the system and associated equipment to allow the new substation to be placed into normal operations.
Kemp said SUD wants to ensure that its customers have safe and reliable utilities, and this new station is the first step toward that goal.
“We’re excited about getting to this point after this brief outage on Saturday,” Kemp said. “We appreciate our customers understanding about it, but we’re excited to be at this point and look
forward to getting this past us.”
SUD has plans to upgrade another substation, its primary station, in the fall of this year, Kemp said.
Mayor Lynn Spruill said the city spent approximately $9 million on this project with the thought of taking the city into the future and giving more reliability, support, growth and development to the community.
“It will help both our business community and our residential community to create a stronger reliability and allow for growth,” Spruill said.
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.
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