Starting the New Year with New Life

Stringing new, higher-capacity conductor wires and other rebuilding and modernizing work is expected to enhance the reliability of the Hanna-Newton Falls 138-kV transmission line in northeast Ohio.

January 22, 2021

Construction crews recently completed the rebuilding and modernizing of an existing 138-kilovolt (kV) transmission line expected to enhance service reliability for more than 100,000 Ohio Edison customers in northeast Ohio.

Rebuilding nearly 140 wooden and steel structures and installing new, higher-capacity conductor wires will reinforce the Hanna-Newton Falls line against severe weather and should help reduce transmission outages in Portage and Trumbull counties. Fiber-optic cable also was added for enhanced network communications, allowing grid operators to react more quickly and effectively to disturbances on the system.

The line extends approximately 20 miles to connect substations in Ravenna and Newton Falls. Construction activities were limited to the existing transmission corridor. Line construction began in May, and the project was completed by late December 2020.

“Investing in our infrastructure is crucial because it helps reduce the number of customers impacted by storm outages as well as shorten the length of outages when they do occur,” said Ed Shuttleworth, regional president, Ohio Edison/Penn Power. “By rebuilding an existing line, we can enhance our ability to serve customers, better manage maintenance expenses, and minimize the project’s impact on local communities and the environment.”

The project is part of Energizing the Future, a multi-year initiative aimed at upgrading FirstEnergy’s transmission facilities with advanced equipment and technologies that reinforce the power grid and help reduce the frequency and duration of customer outages. Since launching the initiative in 2014, FirstEnergy has achieved a 50% reduction in equipment-related transmission outages across its Ohio service area, as well as the Penn Power and West Penn Power territories in western Pennsylvania.