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Lighting Seattle since 1905 Jorge Carrasco, Superintendent
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Subject:   Downtown Customer Asked to Reduce Energy Use Until 5:00 P.M. Friday
For Immediate Release:   
8/15/2008  3:30:00 PM
For More Information Contact:
Mike Eagan (206) 218-4697
Media Line (206) 386-4233
Scott Thomsen  (206) 386-4233

DOWNTOWN CUSTOMERS ASKED TO
REDUCE ENERGY USE UNTIL 5:00 P.M. FRIDAY

Repairs Continue at Downtown Substation

SEATTLE - Seattle City Light is asking its Downtown Seattle customers to continue to reduce their energy use until 5:00 p.m. today while repairs are made to damaged equipment.

We have been able to bring four of the six transformer banks back online, says Seattle City Light Superintendent Jorge Carrasco. Having four of our banks of transformers back on line gives us some level of confidence for meeting customer needs during the remainder of the weekend. It also allows us an opportunity to make the necessary repairs to the remaining two transformer banks that are out of service. We are asking for downtown customers to continue to reduce their consumption until 5:00 p.m. to allow proper cooling for all the equipment as we bring the transformers back into service.

No customers lost power during the equipment failure. City Light anticipated having to cut power to customers along Alaska Way in an effort to reduce load, but crews were able to restore service to one transformer bank in time to avoid a shut down. We would like to thank many of our large, commercial customers who voluntarily reduced their load to help the situation, adds Carrasco. For instance, the Edgewater Hotel is fully booked and has two weddings tonight and they immediately answered our call to reduce power.

Two banks of transformers at the Union Street Substation failed Friday morning while regular maintenance was underway on two other banks of transformers. The maintenance work was part of a two-month regularly scheduled service. When all four transformer banks went out, that left only two transformer banks in operation. The Downtown area is supported by a redundant underground network to increase reliability, but the loss of four transformer banks lowered the substations energy delivery capacity below the potential demand from the customers it serves.

The Union Street substation serves 70 downtown blocks, representing about 2400 customer accounts, many of those accounts are office towers with a number of businesses.

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