Hilton Head Island underground power project close to completion - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Hilton Head Island underground power project close to completion

This is a look at Highway 278 after several power poles were removed and their lines were placed underground (Source: Palmetto Electric) This is a look at Highway 278 after several power poles were removed and their lines were placed underground (Source: Palmetto Electric)
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC (WTOC) -

Palmetto Electric said the company is more than halfway done with their underground power project on Hilton Head Island. 

The electric company says burying cables will have several benefits and it proved its worth during Hurricane Irma. 

Palmetto Electric crews were out on Wiley Road Friday working on the company's underground power project. It's a project they started back in 2004.

"We've worked hard for 15 years in cooperation with the town in transferring the overhead distribution system," said Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations for Palmetto Electric, Tray Hunter. 

Hunter says burying these power lines underground will provide the island with several benefits, like reducing the number of outages during severe storms.

"It's preventative, but you know, you can never win against mother nature," Hunter said. "The ice is the enemy. Ice builds up on lines and causes them to sag. It breaks poles and brings down trees."

Although outages are still possible, Hunter says underground power lines reduce the time it takes to get services back up and running.

"When we had Irma, we had a big surge problem. When the surge came in, the equipment went underwater. As soon as the tide went back out, the services came back on. If it would have been above ground and we lost the lines, we would have had to reconstruct everything," Hunter said.

The company says hiding the lines underground will also help with the island's overall look and safety.

"You see them all the time and you get used to them, but then you truly do notice when they're gone and it's a much better view," Hunter said.

The company is around 90 percent complete with the project. Crews still need to service portions of Spanish Wells and Marshland Road.

According to the company's latest progress report, crews have removed 2,418 power poles and 1,085 overhead transformers around Hilton Head Island.
Around 109 miles of overhead lines have been replaced with underground lines.

The project is expected to be completed within the next two years.

Copyright 2018 WTOC. All rights reserved.

  • NewsNewsMore>>

  • Rain chance increases into Monday

    Rain chance increases into Monday

    Sunday, April 22 2018 10:18 AM EDT2018-04-22 14:18:11 GMT
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)

    High pressure will begin to lose its influence Sunday as a low-pressure system approaches from the west. The low will bring much-needed rain to the area Sunday night into Monday before slowly lifting up the coast through the middle of the week. 

    More >>

    High pressure will begin to lose its influence Sunday as a low-pressure system approaches from the west. The low will bring much-needed rain to the area Sunday night into Monday before slowly lifting up the coast through the middle of the week. 

    More >>
  • School bond referendum fails in Beaufort County

    School bond referendum fails in Beaufort County

    Sunday, April 22 2018 9:49 AM EDT2018-04-22 13:49:42 GMT
    Source: WTOCSource: WTOC

    10,519 people or about 72 percent voted against the referendum, according to unofficial election results from the Beaufort County Election Commission. 

    More >>

    10,519 people or about 72 percent voted against the referendum, according to unofficial election results from the Beaufort County Election Commission. 

    More >>
  • 79-year-old carries out lifelong dream of launching self-made craft

    79-year-old carries out lifelong dream of launching self-made craft

    Saturday, April 21 2018 11:29 PM EDT2018-04-22 03:29:09 GMT
    (Source: WTOC)(Source: WTOC)
    (Source: WTOC)(Source: WTOC)
    It's a boat launch that's been years in the making. Phillip Carter has been building a boat by hand for the past 20 years. The beautiful, handmade troller was put into the water for the first time on Saturday afternoon. His lifelong dream was to complete the boat, a goal he reached just 5 days after his 79th birthday. In the past 10 years he has had 2 open heart surgeries to recover from, making the day even more special for his family. "It means a lot," said Carter'...More >>
    It's a boat launch that's been years in the making. Phillip Carter has been building a boat by hand for the past 20 years. The beautiful, handmade troller was put into the water for the first time on Saturday afternoon. His lifelong dream was to complete the boat, a goal he reached just 5 days after his 79th birthday. In the past 10 years he has had 2 open heart surgeries to recover from, making the day even more special for his family. "It means a lot," said Carter'...More >>
Powered by Frankly