United Illuminating says new $142M Pequonnock substation will protect customers from massive power outages

Jim Cole, of United Illuminating, says the company's new substation is built farther inland and 5 feet above FEMA's 100-year flood level, meaning UI wouldn't have to shut it down the way they were forced to shut down the old one after hurricanes Irene and Sandy.

Frank Recchia and Nicole Alarcon Soares

Mar 22, 2024, 12:12 AM

Updated 22 days ago

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United Illuminating says the new $142 million Pequonnock substation will protect customers from "massive" power outages they've seen in the past.
Hurricanes Irene and Sandy pounded the coast with huge waves, causing widespread flooding.
Rick Torres, owner of Harborview Market, said many Bridgeport businesses lost power for weeks.
Jim Cole, of United Illuminating, says the company's new substation replaces the old Pequonnock substation, but unlike the old one, the new substation is built farther inland and 5 feet above FEMA's 100-year flood level, meaning UI wouldn't have to shut it down the way they were forced to shut down the old one after hurricanes Irene and Sandy, which left 40,000 customers out of power.
"So this station is going to be resilient for the future as we go through climate change, and we may have additional storms like we had Irene and Sandy, and as you can see everything has been elevated here to a height that will protect the system from future flooding," Cole said.
Officials said the new substation has just this week become operational.
Richard Pinto, from UI, said the 5 feet of elevation will help prevent any kind of catastrophic flooding inside the building.
UI officials said the substation should be fully operational by early next year.


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