Las Cruces' Lesson in Power Protection

January 19, 2017

By Steve Anderson - Contributing Writer

Object lessons for the value of power protection seem to crop up just about every day. We've all seen the headlines of squirrels taking on transformers and losing...badly...as well as the poles down, lines down, and substations shorting out that are increasingly a part of everyday life.  Las Cruces, NM recently showed us once again the value of having power protection systems in place thanks to a huge power outage that took place almost immediately after a previous power outage, marking two consecutive days of power outages.

Just after 8:30 p.m., reports note, around 5,000 customers in Las Cruces lost power for the second day running. The previous outage was much larger in scale, though, hitting nearly 13,000 people. While El Paso Electric, the company offering power in Las Cruces, wasn't talking reasons for either outage, a report from its Twitter (News - Alert) feed stated that a fix was in the making and would be out as soon as possible.

The power was brought back on to all customers, reports noted, about two hours after the outage, which was good news, but still a perfect case-in-point for power protection systems.

It's a point that we're all more than familiar with by now; the United States' power grid is not what it once was, and is in desperate need of a complete overhaul, stem to stern. While there's some move on to do just that, especially with an incoming Trump presidency talking about infrastructure renovation, we can't take that for granted. We can't take the power grid itself for granted either, as Las Cruces residents have just discovered twice running. Having a power protection system—whether something as simple as an uninterrupted power supply, to let users shut off devices safely and save work, or a full generator—is vital to making sure a power outage doesn't impact a work day any harder than it needs to.  Failing to do so effectively hands over the outage's length of time to competitors that have prepared sufficiently for such events.

Even something as simple as having a mobile workforce that can go where power is available can mean the difference between a whole day lost and a couple hours lost trying to get set up elsewhere. Regardless of what the power protection system looks like and works like, having it in place will make all the difference in the end.

Edited by Alicia Young

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