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Author Topic: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!  (Read 7062 times)

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Offline Roxie

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #120 on: September 12, 2017, 08:51:36 am »
We got power back at 5:30am.  It's going to be a long road back for some areas and folks.  One foot in front of the other.

That's the best news I've heard all day!   8)
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Offline sandhills

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #121 on: September 12, 2017, 09:07:23 am »
Amen Lynn.  It's amazing what those people accomplish in such a short time and that much devastation to work around.  Thanks everyone for checking in also, we've been praying for you all here.

Offline samandothers

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #122 on: September 12, 2017, 09:48:55 am »
Agree MM.

We went up to Va. last Thursday up I77.  We met many convoys of tree and line crews heading south at that time.  They mobilize early to travel and get into position.

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #123 on: September 12, 2017, 10:08:10 am »
Sam,

   If you'd kept on coming up I-77 you'd have made it up to here. Some of the crews you saw may have been ours. I talked to a retired friend from the power company and he told me about another mutual friend still working there. Said he and his team had headed south. They were to get further destination instructions en route. He said they had spent a lot of time the last few years on the road responding to such events. I'm glad they are there. I worry about them especially with inexperienced people incorrectly hooking up gensets that backfeed into the power lines. Every year electricians get killed from such mistakes.
Howard Green
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Offline Ox

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #124 on: September 12, 2017, 10:52:52 am »
I've never understood the backfeeding thing.  One time, many years ago in another of our many power outages here in north Appalachia, I made a quick mistake and forgot to disconnect from the grid before sending power out from the generator.  The generator died immediately.  It was such a massive load it was impossible to describe.  In less than half a second there was silence.  With this experience I have a hard time understanding how anyone can backfeed into the grid.  Can somebody explain?  Is backfeeding into the grid a myth? 

This is my thought:  if I try to backfeed into the grid, I'm now trying to power every single home that's hooked into the power lines going up and down the road.  All of these homes are switched on waiting for the power to come on, begging for power.  I try to supply that power with a home sized generator and it simply can't.

Plus the transformer on the pole that brings the power down to 240 from whatever it is in the main lines.  Can I send power back through that transformer the other way?  Does it take my 240 I'm making with my generator and bump it up to whatever is in the main lines? 

This backfeeding don't make no sense.  ???
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Offline sandhills

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #125 on: September 12, 2017, 12:52:32 pm »
I'm not a lineman but I do know after several really bad ice storms in one winter if they catch you doing it they not only fry your generator but you'll also be the last to get service back.  I don't blame them one bit, I'm just guessing here but I don't think it would feed back through a transformer but if you were the one working on the line between your generator and that transformer??  I have no idea really but it's a good point and question.  That particular winter we had a LOT of service trucks stuck in ditches and on the ice, all you had to do was thank them and tell them where the tractors/chains were if you weren't around just grab one and use it, service was much better that way rather than energizing a dead line they were working on.  They were working in miserable conditions (as we all were) and a lot of folks without power for a few weeks but they get it done!  My hats off to all the folks doing this and all the cleanup, not an easy job to say the least.   

Offline JV

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #126 on: September 12, 2017, 01:29:56 pm »
A generator can feed back through the transformer to the primary line stepping up to fatal levels.  Our local REMC's stress this when installing a generator.  The ONLY safe way is to install a transfer switch between the meter and your home.  This disconnects the feed from the power company and transfers it to the generator.  These can be automatic or manual.  Never connect the generator directly to your distribution panel or feed through a receptacle like a dryer receptacle.
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Offline bucknwfl

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #127 on: September 12, 2017, 02:28:52 pm »
Yes an alternating current transformer works both ways. A 12kv transformer normally has 7200 volts coming in the high (line) side and 120 and 240 volts coming out the low ( load) side to your house. If you put 120 volts in the load side with your generator you just put 7200 volt back out on the line at however many amps your generator can stand. The windings in the transformer are at a ratio and not hard wired but the voltage is induced from one side to the other

We have fellow utility workers get killed every year.  Remember it's not dead til it's grounded
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Offline Ianab

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #128 on: September 12, 2017, 04:34:12 pm »
And while it's true that if you are trying to drive a significant part of the national grid, then your generator is going to trip out instantly.

But if the line is broken at the nearest transformer, then the load may be something the generator can handle, you and your neighbour only. And you are making many thousands of volts on the high voltage side of the transformer, on lines that "should" be dead.

Now the linesmen should be testing and grounding lines as they are working, but mistakes happen, and if you accidentally grab an 11kv line, you end up dead.
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Offline sandhills

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #129 on: September 13, 2017, 02:03:10 am »
Thank you guys for clarifying that (or at least in my simple mind sort of), my best friend through highschool is a linesman and I see what you all do, I have trouble with electric fences  ::).

Offline red

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #130 on: September 13, 2017, 05:36:56 am »
We hear a lot about fuel shortages and people being upset . Just imagine if the're is an Alcohol shortage.
We have a lot of good boys and girls in harms way
lets all support them and their familys.

Offline coxy

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #131 on: September 13, 2017, 08:34:29 am »
i don't get the fuel shortage thing one person say we are all most empty and 2 more say lots keep using   ???

Offline red

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #132 on: September 13, 2017, 08:38:20 am »
Tampa used to receive 12,000,000 gallons a day until last week. Also other ports on the east coast stopped receiving Fuel .
We have a lot of good boys and girls in harms way
lets all support them and their familys.

Offline samandothers

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #133 on: September 13, 2017, 09:12:25 am »
Crews move early so they can start soon after it is safe to do so. It is tricky to try and time and determine when and where to move crews to but utilities can not wait too long particularly when requesting crews from distances way. Plus they must set up logistics for housing and feeding.

Offline Ox

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #134 on: September 13, 2017, 09:16:07 am »
And while it's true that if you are trying to drive a significant part of the national grid, then your generator is going to trip out instantly.

But if the line is broken at the nearest transformer, then the load may be something the generator can handle, you and your neighbour only. And you are making many thousands of volts on the high voltage side of the transformer, on lines that "should" be dead.

Now the linesmen should be testing and grounding lines as they are working, but mistakes happen, and if you accidentally grab an 11kv line, you end up dead.
Thanks for this explanation, lanab.  It finally makes sense to me!  It is so simple now that it's spelled out for me and I'm a little embarrassed that it didn't come to me before now.
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Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #135 on: September 13, 2017, 09:46:15 am »
   I had a friend down in the SE corner of VA who said their power company had a collar they would put on under the meter that served as a disconnect like a transfer switch. It had a plug-in spot to connect your genset and an indicator light which, if I remember correctly, came on when the prime power was back on. I think you had to go disconnect your genset before prime power could flow through the unit so it was not an automatic action like the transfer switch on my whole house Guardian/Generac set does. The collar arrangement made sure the power could not backfeed from the genset to the utility lines.
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Offline grouch

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #136 on: September 13, 2017, 10:38:57 am »
Linemen are a special kind of insane. They'll climb out of a warm bed in the middle of the night to go out into blowing wind, snow, ice, rain or whatever is out there and work on damaged power lines that most of us don't want to get near when they're in perfect order.

When the big ice storm tore up Kentucky in 2009, we were among the lucky ones and only went without electricity for 7 days. This whole area was knocked back to the time before TVA, in the 1930s. A crew from Yazoo City, Mississippi picked their way through ice-covered, broken and bowed trees to re-hang wires to the transformer. Tinkling and cracking noises followed their truck's passage as it brushed limbs hanging low over the road. They accepted hot coffee but didn't waste any time getting the lines up and moving on restore power to someone else desperate for it.

Yesterday morning, I sat on my porch and watched low-flying, puffy dark clouds scudding along at high speed from northeast to southwest. That's 180 degrees wrong for here. People on the other side of the Appalachians get nor'easters. We get leftover battles from the Gulf, the plains and Canada -- all from the western half of the compass. Irma must've been a monster to turn things that far out of whack.

May the good folks who run toward trouble get you Floridians back to something resembling normalcy real quick.
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Offline Raider Bill

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #137 on: September 13, 2017, 10:56:29 am »
We got our power back late yesterday afternoon. minor damage to my house soffit and fascia. lost some fence panels and posts. Every 4x4 that was cemented into the ground snapped off at the concrete. Those that were just sunk in dirt did not. Lost 5 ornamental trees.

Wild Bill lost a china berry tree that crashed into a metal shed. Luckily it missed his bee hives. He never lost power.

About 10 Electric service trucks from Dayton power and light in Ohio came into our neighborhood yesterday afternoon. The Foreman said they wouldn't be leaving until we had power.

Keli lost her roof so she, her BF and Mother will be with us for awhile.

Minor damage to my rentals. Lost a porch roof, picture window and some roof shingles.

All in all we did good.

The storm making a turn to the east and losing steam saved us. Had it continued on the projected course up the west coast as a cat 4 would have been devastating.
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Offline Mooseherder

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #138 on: September 13, 2017, 10:58:52 am »
It's going to be a three shirt day cleaning up. :(
My phone is still out but I'm in no mood to go and deal with it.
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Offline petefrom bearswamp

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Re: Hurricane Irma and then there is Jose!
« Reply #139 on: September 13, 2017, 12:28:43 pm »
Glad all who checked in so far are OK with only power outages minimal damage and no personal injury.

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