The Salt wildfire burning in the Tonto National Forest has caused a large transmission line that brings energy to SRP customers from eastern Arizona to trip and go out of service.
The loss of this critical transmission line could result in SRP not having sufficient power to meet very high customer demand. SRP is attempting to secure additional energy capacity to replace the loss of this transmission line, however high demand for energy across the western U.S. has limited available supplies. With the exception of the loss of this transmission line, the balance of SRP’s system is operating normally.
It is unknown at this time when the impacted transmission line will be able to be reenergized without subsequent faults due to smoke and the unpredictability of the wildfire and limited resources currently available to fight the fire.
To avoid potential rotating outages, SRP is asking its customers to reduce their energy use today from 3 to 9 p.m. Rotating outages happen when energy capacity does not meet customer energy demand.
During a rotating outage, certain circuits within SRP service territory are selected for interruption. These circuits are opened for a brief period of time, then restored into service as another section of circuits are selected for interruption. The entire process is automated, though critical Valley facilities such as hospitals and airports, are not subject to power outages.
The interruption is intended to affect customers for 20 to 30 minutes. However, due to equipment and operating limitations, it is possible that some customers could experience an interruption lasting longer than 20 to 30 minutes.
To reduce energy demand, SRP is asking its customers to reduce their electric use wherever possible. Customers can help alleviate the current problem by:
- Turn up air conditioning thermostats to warmer temperatures
- Close window shades, blinds, or drapes to block the sunlight during the hottest part of the day.
- Use microwaves or outdoor grills for cooking instead of ovens or stoves.
- Delay using appliances and equipment, such as pool pumps, washers, dryers, and dishwashers until the evening.