New Jersey utility addresses power outages with ‘TripSaver’ initiative


US utility Jersey Central Power and Light (JCP&L) is installing automated reclosing devices on its distribution lines to reduce the frequency and duration of power outages.

The 1,700 new ‘TripSaver’ works like a circuit breaker, in the event of an interruption, it automatically re-energizes a power line within seconds to keep power safely flowing to customers.

Installations will be made on 310 circuits by the end of 2020.

The device isolates an outage affecting a particular line from the main power line to avoid an interruption across a larger area.

The system will help JCP&L workers to pinpoint the location of a fault and help them understand the cause of an outage.

The project is part of a $97 million Reliability Plus Infrastructure Investment Programme designed to address tree damage to the distribution system.

Jim Fakult, president of JCP&L, said: “TripSaver installations are just one of many JCP&L Reliability Plus enhancements designed to help reduce the frequency of power outages and modernize the electric grid for JCP&L’s customers.

“The addition of these devices will make restoring service an automatic process rather than sending a crew to investigate. This new technology is safer, more efficient and cost-effective.”