Photo: Sun Sentinel
“Florida Power & Light Co. is planning a pilot program to put utility lines underground in not-yet-identified neighborhoods in the state…

FPL said September’s Hurricane Irma showed that underground main powerlines are more resilient in general, and during storms because they can’t be downed by trees and overgrown vegetation — the prime reason that 90 percent of FPL’s customers experienced an outage.

During Irma, 69 percent of hardened, overhead main powerlines and 82 percent of non-hardened main powerlines experienced outages, while only 19 percent of underground main lines lost power, FPL said in response to Sun Sentinel questions.

FPL said it plans to seek the Florida Public Service Commission’s approval for the pilot in locations somewhere in its 35-county service territory, ‘to determine which powerlines would benefit the most from undergrounding to enhance overall reliability,’ FPL spokesman Bill Orlove said…”

— Marcia Heroux Pounds, Sun Sentinel

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