East Tennessee Underground Roundup – January 25-26
Underground power distribution is a fact of life for many in the Tennessee Valley. In many locations nearly all new subdivisions have buried power lines, while in others, local ordinances or policies may actually prohibit the construction of new overhead distribution systems. At the same time, older underground distribution systems are reaching the end of their lives, and requiring significant maintenance or replacement.
Designing, installing, repairing and replacing these system are specialized and technical processes. In many cases, poor designs or errors made in installation or maintenance may not become apparent for literally years, when damaged equipment prematurely fails, requiring emergency responses from the utility, inconveniencing customers and costing the utility payers funds.
The East Tennessee Underground Rodeo was conceived by the members of the Oak Ridge Electric Department as a venue where utility workers, trainers and suppliers could all gather to learn from each other, exchange ideas on techniques and tools and explore areas of interest and overlap.
Courses are being offered in three major areas of interest, Design, Construction and Troubleshooting and Maintenance. Each course will be taught with qualified instructors familiar to our industry and area. There will also be plenty of scheduled time for attendees to visit with vendors who specialize in underground technologies, some of which will demonstrate their tools and techniques on a special vendor demonstration stage.
For those who travel early, there will be a social event on Wednesday night, with music, food and drink. The real work will start on Thursday, but there will be some fun to be had. We are sponsoring a vendor rodeo, for example, with head to head competition among proud teams of our supplier’s personnel.
For more information, visit http://ugroundup.oakridgetn.gov/.
The City of Oak Ridge is once again receiving calls from customers who have been targeted by scammers posing as City employees. The scams are currently being directed at commercial customers, but have been aimed at residential customers in the past.
The scam begins when a caller advises the customer that their utility bill is past due and that a “technician” is on the way to disconnect their utilities. The customer is advised to pay the bill immediately with either cash or a pre-pay credit card to avoid disconnection. The caller can be very convincing and they have garnered a long list of victims across the United States.
“It’s heartbreaking to think that there are predators out there taking advantage of the rush and confusion of the holiday season to defraud people of their hard earned money,” said Marlene Bannon, Manager of the Oak Ridge Utility Business Office. “We hope that everyone will help us spread the word and that we can help our customers from becoming victims.”
Please be aware that the City does not contact its customers and request payment over the phone. Our notices are sent in writing through the mail.
Should someone contact you or someone you know claiming that a utility bill is unpaid, hang up immediately and contact your utility provider directly- not with any phone number supplied by the caller. In Oak Ridge, call 865-425-3400. Please be aware that we will not disconnect power on Fridays or any day that immediately precedes a holiday (such as Christmas Eve).
Make Oak Ridge Energy Efficient (MORE2)
Oak Ridge is kicking off the Make Oak Ridge Energy Efficient (MORE2) project to perform whole-home, deep energy retrofits for 229 qualified residents in homes that are at least 20 years old. The project goal is to reduce electrical energy usage in homes to improve the quality of life for qualified residents and homeowners by significantly increasing the efficiency and comfort of their homes.
Energy audits will be performed to determine which energy-saving measures can be utilized to achieve the reduction in electrical energy consumption. The City of Oak Ridge Electric Department will also educate its residents about ways to control their consumption through the practice of energy efficient habits.
Please visit http://www.makeoree.com/ for more information to see if you qualify and how to apply for the program.
City of Oak Ridge Electric Department
Physical address: 100 Woodbury Lane, Oak Ridge, TN 37830
Mailing address: PO Box 1, Oak Ridge, TN 37831
Send us an email.