Government officials, utility commissions, and customers look to transmission system facility owners to minimize outages under severe weather conditions. While many of these occurrences are above and beyond industry accepted design parameters, utilities are seeking approaches to harden their facilities to improve the ability to withstand these natural disasters. Drawing upon our wide range of transmission grid project experience, Sargent & Lundy has supported clients to develop storm hardening solutions.
We have performed storm hardening conceptual design studies to determine the viability, risks, and costs associated with various mitigation options. One study involved evaluating potential flood levels and water intrusion paths at several substations. Solutions considered included floodwalls and elevated approaches into substations, which were evaluated from an economic, operations, and reliability standpoint. Considerations included sheltered aisle switchgear design, outage plans, grounding, emergency power, emergency egress points, and risk mitigation.