Utility Pole Inspections to Begin Next Week

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KISSIMMEE, Fla., October 18, 2010 – Kissimmee Utility Authority’s annual utility pole inspection program kicks off next week and continues for the next several months. The inspections are designed to ensure the stability of the utility’s wood transmission and distribution poles.

KUA contracted with Buffalo, New York-based Osmose Utilities Services, Inc. in 2007 to assist with its annual inspection of utility poles. The inspections include a visual from the groundline, sound and bore, and strength analysis for each pole. Based on the outcome of the inspection, poles may be treated, reinforced or replaced as needed.

During the inspection period, pole inspectors will be entering yards and excavating soil at the base of the poles to conduct their inspections and to treat the buried pole material. Contractors will repack the soil around the pole once they have completed their tasks. These individuals are working under the supervision of KUA and carry identification cards.

KUA currently maintains 14,640 wood distribution poles and 245 wood transmission poles throughout its 85-square mile service area in Osceola County. All new transmission construction involves the use of concrete or steel poles for increased stability.

In 2006, the Florida Public Service Commission mandated regular pole inspections for investor-owned utilities and telephone companies, but made the inspections optional for municipal utilities and rural electric cooperatives. In an effort to ensure the highest level of reliability and customer confidence, KUA voluntarily adopted the inspection standards.

Founded in 1901, KUA (www.kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility providing electric and telecommunication services to 62,000 customers in Osceola County, Fla.

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Chris M. Gent
(407) 933-9836