Monthly Archives: July 2021

Weather-Related Disasters Lead to Opportunities, Lessons

Recent records were set for weather-related disasters, with repair costs in the multibillion-dollar range. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has kept a yearly count of floods, heatwaves, tropical storms, hurricanes, droughts, and wildfires since 1980. In terms of frequency and severity, these events have risen exponentially.

In 2020, we saw unprecedented wildfires in the West, six hurricanes in the South, numerous tropical storms, tornadoes, an ice storm with hail the size of softballs, and a derecho windstorm responsible for tearing up crop fields, homes, and businesses across the Midwest. These weather-related catastrophes lead to states of emergency in multiple regions across the United States. Thousands of plants, animals, and people died. Additionally, the monetary repercussions totaled $96 billion.

Conversely, a fruit crop freeze led to disaster in Florida. Combined with a few storms and tornadoes scattered throughout the country, 1981’s financial total for cleanup due to weather-related disasters was a mere $2.9 billion.

Record snowfall, below-average temperatures, ice storms, record-breaking fires, and mass floods have knocked out power across Texas, California, and Michigan so far this year.

Brett Brenner, president of the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), said, “We’re just not prepared for disasters of this scale. From what we’re seeing in the electrical trades, most of the time, it’s complacency and less-experienced people [DIY homeowners setting up equipment or business owners reusing damaged equipment] coming into the picture that are the cause of injuries. It’s not so much about what we aren’t already equipped to handle.”

Therefore, these unanticipated risks are caused by human intervention rather than climate. ESFI is dedicated to educating the public on what they can do to reduce dangers for themselves and emergency responders such as positioning electrical equipment above flood levels, taking precautions when using generators, evaluating water-logged power-driven gear, and more.

Protection of homes, businesses, employees, and clients is vital to success. By providing the proper equipment, training, and education, disaster zones can be more easily remediated by all. Businessowners and employees share the responsibility of working safely when it comes to disaster relief and daily performance.

Consider the following tips:

  • Maintain a cordial, in-person relationship with your insurance provider.
  • Ensure employees are well-trained and incentivized to work safely.
  • Conduct routine safety meetings.
  • Review insurance coverage and business needs on an annual basis.
  • Evaluate possible hazards and create plans to recuperate if disaster strikes.
  • Create risk management plans based on weather-related emergencies.
  • Appoint certain employees to execute specific steps if severe weather occurs.

J&P Electrical is a full-service electrical equipment company. At J&P, we supply contractors, end-users, and supply houses with new surplus, quality reconditioned, and obsolete electrical equipment. We also purchase a wide range of electrical equipment such as bus plugs, ducts, panel switches, substations, and transformers. Call us at 877-844-5514 or visit us at https://www.jpelectricalcompany.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Helping Wildlife Through Power Line Corridors

For safe and reliable electrical transmission, bushhogging, seeding, and herbicides are used to control weeds. Along high-voltage power line corridors and local distribution systems, a low profile must be implemented so trees and other tall vegetation do not fall onto lines. Tree branches and shrubbery meeting power lines equals interference sparking outages, wildfires, and other issues. Federal and state requirements are in place, which set guidelines for managing vegetation along power line passages.

Utility companies can manage their own power line vegetation issues based on their rights-of-way (ROWs) beyond basic trimming and mowing. By promoting native low-growing vegetative communities, utility companies can offer safe, reliable operation of infrastructure while simultaneously benefiting local wildlife such as songbirds, pollinators, and more. Additionally, adding low-growing, native vegetation can contribute to corporate sustainability goals, lower the site’s carbon footprint, reduce long-term maintenance costs, and beautify the landscape.

Power line ROWs make up substantial property countrywide, meaning implementing these strategies, called Integrated Vegetation Management (IVM), could provide nearly five million acres of habitat for pollinators and other wildlife. Some of the benefits for wildlife include food sources, shelter, and nesting areas.

Rick Johnstone, president of IVM Partners Inc., explained, “If you use the right techniques and the right chemistry, you’ll restore the habitat that used to be there but hadn’t been allowed to be there due to routine cutting. If you kill the root systems of unwanted species, the seeds in the soil will have a chance to grow.”

According to Johnstone, the typical methods of constant mowing and tree-cutting generally promote regrowth of negative vegetation such as invasive species (aggressive, non-native plants). The relentless re-growth results in frequent maintenance, leading to elevated labor costs.

Instead, IVM is a more enticing practice, as it can deploy appropriate, environmentally-sound, cost-effective methods to control undesirable vegetation. Techniques include bushhogging, mowing, selective tree cutting, herbicide applications, biological controls, and seeding.

“The vegetation pretty much manages itself,” once you get a compatible plant community which usually takes a couple of years, Johnstone said. After that, only periodic treatments will be needed.

J&P Electrical is a full-service electrical equipment company. At J&P, we supply contractors, end-users, and supply houses with new surplus, quality reconditioned, and obsolete electrical equipment. We also purchase a wide range of electrical equipment such as bus plugs, ducts, panel switches, substations, and transformers. Call us at 877-844-5514 or visit us at https://www.jpelectricalcompany.com.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.