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FirstEnergy Nears Completion of Transmission Line Upgrade in Northeast Ohio

Dec. 10, 2020
Project to rebuild and modernize existing 138-kV power line to enhance service reliability for customers in Portage and Trumbull counties.

FirstEnergy Corp. and its subsidiaries are nearing the completion of work to rebuild and modernize an existing 138-kV power line expected to enhance service reliability for more than 100,000 Ohio Edison customers in Portage and Trumbull counties.

Rebuilding nearly 140 wooden and steel structures and installing new, higher-capacity conductor wires will reinforce the line against severe weather and help reduce outages on the transmission system. Fiber optic cable will also be added for enhanced network communications, allowing grid operators to react more quickly and effectively to disturbances on the system. The line extends approximately 20 miles to connect existing electric substations in Newton Falls and Ravenna. Construction activities are limited to the existing transmission corridor.

Line construction began in May and the project is on track to be completed by the end of this year.

"Investing in our infrastructure is crucial because it will help reduce the number of customers impacted by storm outages as well as shorten the length of outages when they do occur," said Ed Shuttleworth, regional president of Ohio Edison and Penn Power. "By rebuilding an existing line, we can enhance our ability to serve customers, better manage maintenance expenses, and minimize the project's impact on local communities and the environment."

The project is part of Energizing the Future, a multi-year investment initiative aimed at upgrading FirstEnergy's transmission facilities with advanced equipment and technologies that will reinforce the power grid and help reduce the frequency and duration of customer outages. Since launching the initiative in 2014, FirstEnergy has achieved a 50% reduction in equipment-related transmission outages across its Ohio service area, as well as the Penn Power and West Penn Power territories in western Pennsylvania.

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