A reliable response

Apr 20, 2022

After the storm … GRDA crews work to repair downed power lines, following a summer storm, in this photo from a couple of years ago. In such instances, GRDA crews across the Authority work together to make repairs, keep the power flowing and maintain GRDA’s reputation for reliable electricity.

Power for Progress… a weekly column from the Grand River Dam Authority.

With approximately 1,200 miles of high-voltage electric transmission lines carrying its power across Oklahoma, the Grand River Dam Authority has a lot of ground to cover when it comes to maintaining its system. Fortunately, a team of dedicated and experienced professionals keeps an eye on that system 24/7/365. They operate it, maintain it and, when necessary, step in to make repairs and upgrades. Following tornadoes, ice storms, wildfires or other incidents that result in damage to the energy delivery system, GRDA crews are committed to working safely and swiftly, together, to make repairs and allow GRDA to maintain its reputation as a reliable, electricity supplier.

That reputation is no secret. In fact, the American Public Power Association (APPA) has recognized GRDA four of the last five years (2018, 2020-22) for providing “exceptional electric reliability.” GRDA received the recognition primarily for its reliability record among its distribution customers in the MidAmerica Industrial Park.

APPA helps electric utilities track power outage and restoration data through its subscription-based eReliability Tracker service and then compares the data to national statistics tracked by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) for all types of electric utilities. Based on EIA data, GRDA ranks in the top quartile (25 percent) of utilities for System Average Interruption Duration Index.

Of course, achieving those marks requires teamwork. From the system planners to those who keep the rights-of-way clear, and from the system operators to the electric linemen, many employees, with many years of experience, are involved in the reliability role.

As spring (and Oklahoma storm season) approaches, it is hard to say for sure exactly what challenges GRDA’s energy delivery system may face. However, one certainty is that our team is prepared and ready to respond.

GRDA is Oklahoma’s largest public power utility; fully funded by revenues from electric and water sales instead of taxes. Each day, GRDA strives to be an “Oklahoma agency of excellence” by focusing on the 5 E’s: electricity, economic development, environmental stewardship, employees, and efficiency.