Our SMART (Strategic Maintenance and Reliability Taskforce) program was developed to target the causes of short, nuisance blinks and outages. While it is not possible to prevent every outage, the SMART program is designed to prevent common causes of outages in areas which encounter periodic power loss events. These events are often triggered by animals such as squirrels and birds or from tree limbs that contact the lines. The SMART program involves a pole to pole inspection of our entire system. During the course of this inspection, our crews will install wildlife protection, replace older porcelain cutouts and lightening arrestors. In addition, all connections are checked and tightened where needed. Areas, where trees have begun to encroach on our circuits, will be identified for clearing by or tree trimmers.
Our SMART program has been going strong since 2013 and has dramatically reduced outage minutes as well as the number of occurrences of outages. This program is ongoing on a 10-year rotation.