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News and comments on community broadband networks, the communities deploying them and the technologies that support them. Published by Denise Frey and Al Bonnyman.

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Tuesday, April 13, 2004


"Faults Still Plague Electric System As Peak Summertime Use Nears"

The Wall Street Journal has a long overview article on last year's blackout in the Northeast and the prospects for more trouble this year. The article requires a paid subscription to access it; here are some excerpts:
"As the summer months approach, North America's electricity system remains frail and many of the shortcomings that contributed to a massive failure eight months ago have yet to be fixed."

"Investigators and utility executives agree that the electric system still is plagued by the kinds of weaknesses that left 50 million people in the U.S. and Canada without power Aug. 14. A major study of the blackout cites lingering deficiencies, including poorly prepared engineers, faulty equipment settings, voluntary reliability standards and muddled oversight."

"'The transmission system has been leaned on and leaned on and it's in fairly fragile shape now,' said Joseph Welch, president of International Transmission Co., a Novi, Mich., electric-transmission company. Adds Kenneth Rose, senior fellow at Michigan State University's Institute of Public Utilities: 'Ironing out all the problems will be fairly difficult.'"


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