Storms cause damages to VEA property

Severe storms moved through the Valley Electric Association service territory, impacting VEA’s transmission system, substations and distribution system starting at approximately 4:15 a.m. in the morning on Oct. 18.

At the height of the event, approximately 19,250 members were without power in the Pahrump and Sandy Valley areas. The bulk of VEA’s members had their power restored to normal by 6:49 a.m.

“During the October 18 storm, VEA’s weather tracking system recorded more than 387 lightning strikes from Sandy Valley to Amargosa Valley, many occurring close to VEA’s transmission system and substations,” a statement from VEA read. “Line crews and technicians were able to minimize the duration of the outages for the cooperative’s members.

“VEA thanks its members for their patience and support.”

Actual damage to VEA equipment was minimal and the outages were the result of VEA’s system operating as it should to protect equipment from lightning.

In Pahrump, a lightning arrestor on a distribution transformer was destroyed and was replaced that same morning. The repair took a relatively short amount of time to fix as it took approximately an hour to complete.

One primary jumper, a piece of equipment that connects two lines, in Pahrump was damaged by lightning and needed to be replaced. This was also repaired the same morning of the storm in approximately half an hour.

A secondary lift pole in Pahrump broke off due to wind and rain, and was replaced on Monday.

Other issues are still waiting to be resolved from the storm that dumped 1.18 inches of rain on Pahrump and up to half an inch in surrounding towns.

One pole in Amargosa Valley was washed out from flooding and is leaning over. The pole is scheduled to be repaired on Oct. 26.

Also in Amargosa Valley, flooding removed some dirt around three other poles. The poles are still standing, but the dirt must be replaced to ensure they remain stable. This repair is also scheduled for Oct. 26.

The cost of the repairs is not yet available because not all of the work has been completed, VEA said in a statement.

Contact reporter Mick Akers at makers@pvtimes. Find @mickakers on Twitter.