Friday, December 1, 2023

Temporary Generators Removed; No Cause Yet for Wildwood Substation Fire

Atlantic City Electric crews work to restore power at the utility's electric plant substation on Lake Avenue in Wildwood at about 11:30 a.m. July 8.
Collin Hall/File Photo
Atlantic City Electric crews work to restore power at the utility’s electric plant substation on Lake Avenue in Wildwood at about 11:30 a.m. July 8.

By Herald Staff

Burned Cable Under Switchgear Building was Reported to NJBPU

WILDWOOD – The parent company of Atlantic City Electric (ACE) announced, July 26, that there were no signs of foul play related to the blackout that hit Five Mile Island, July 7, lasting about 30 hours.

Frank Tedesco, a spokesman with Pepco Holdings, said the company was removing all temporary generators used to restore power after a fire at the Lake Avenue substation in Wildwood. Tedesco said the cause of the fire still remains under investigation.

“A thorough and comprehensive investigation into the incident at our Lake Avenue substation is ongoing,” Tedesco said in a press release. “The investigation includes support from third-party experts to assist us in determining and validating our findings.”

The electric company did inform the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) that preliminary information indicates a cable fire located below the switchgear building.

Tedesco said the temporary generators would remain on site as the company works to return the local energy grid to operate at its normal configuration, including the installation of more permanent devices and equipment at the substation.

He said mobile and spare transformers would also remain on the island as a contingency and to add energy system redundancy, helping ensure reliable service.

A fire at the Lake Avenue substation was reported at around 12:30 p.m., July 7, causing power outages for about 24,000 ACE customers. The outage sent food service businesses scrambling to save products that required refrigeration, and the lodging industry was unable to provide air conditioning for guests.

“We appreciate the patience and understanding of our customers and the community as we continue to make these permanent repairs,” Tedesco said.

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