Crews and heavy vehicles descended en masse into Jurien Bay on Wednesday to complete a massive maintenance and upgrade project for the town.
The impressive show of high-vis, which included almost 50 lineworkers and 18 trucks from northern and southern regional depots, was focused to maximise work schedules and reduce the number of planned outages for the community.
Scheduling and Dispatch Manager Don Stander said the ambitious plan was launched because of the specific challenges that the Jurien Bay network presented every time maintenance is scheduled.
“Jurien Bay has a radial network that feeds off, and loops back to, the grid which means there are very few options to back-feed or isolate parts of the local network. So when poles and powerlines need to be replaced, a planned outage impacts a lot of homes and businesses,” Mr Stander said.
“When we first looked at the works scheduled for Jurien Bay we saw that the amount of poles and powerline work could take around five months and need up to 15 planned outages to complete,” he said.
“We knew that wasn’t acceptable for the community and businesses, so we went back to the scheduling team and worked with the shire to blitz the project, reducing planned outages from 15 to just two by concentrating works over two weeks.”
Part of the work efficiency involved bundling similar jobs that could be done under ‘live-line’ conditions, allowing work to be done without an outage.
Additional crews and trucks were brought in from Perth and surrounding regional depots to fast track the upgrade work of 65 poles and 20 other essential work packages.
“This is a great example of local shires and Western Power working together to successfully maintain the network and minimise interruptions to our customers,” Mr Stander said.