T&D World Magazine

Composite Poles Stand Up to Texas Tornado

Resin Systems Inc., a technology innovator and manufacturer of advanced composite products for infrastructure markets, announces its RStandard poles have withstood an important field test in Lajitas, Texas - a direct hit by a tornado. In spite of high winds and swirling debris, the RStandard poles demonstrated their worth and capability in hardening the Rio Grande Electric Cooperative, Inc. ("RGEC") grid. RGEC maintains over 9,400 mi of distribution line and 143 mi of transmission line in west Texas and southern New Mexico comprising an area over 27,000 sq mi.

Dan Laws, general manager and chief executive officer for RGEC, stated, "A tornado touched down in Lajitas on October 7th. Several homes in the area had roofs ripped completely off. We had padmounted transformers and junction boxes swept completely off their pads! We lost eight 40-ft Class 3 wooden poles on our brand new Study Butte-Lajitas 34.5-kV 3-phase line. These were snapped off like toothpicks 2 ft above the ground. RGEC Operations reported that the RStandard composite poles that we installed in this area 'did not budge at all.' "

Even before the tornado struck, RGEC was already considering the purchase of additional RStandard poles for several projects because of their favorable previous experience installing RStandard poles. Obviously, the RGEC is now even more impressed with RStandard composite pole technology.

"If we could afford to replace all our poles tomorrow with the RStandard pole, we would do it given the increased strength, durability and reliability that we believe these poles would provide." stated Larry T. Powell, director of engineering for RGEC.

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