Continuing upgrades as growth continues in Northwest Ohio
This is an exciting time for economic development in the greater Toledo area because more and more large companies are realizing what a great place northwest Ohio is to start or expand their business. We have witnessed this growth in Defiance and other areas around the state. Partners like FirstEnergy Corp. make economic development possible.
Toledo Edison, a FirstEnergy Corp. electric company celebrating its 100th anniversary in November, is proud to support work to help advance business development in the region while strengthening its electric system to meet the growing demand for safe and reliable power for many years to come.
FirstEnergy continues investing in upgrades to its Toledo Edison electric system to support a $700 million expansion at North Star BlueScope Steel and to meet the projected energy needs of other industrial facilities in the area. FirstEnergy recently invested nearly $2.5 million to upgrade equipment at the substation that delivers electricity to North Star BlueScope Steel in Delta. The upgrades include installation of two mega-voltage capacitor banks – equipment that will help ensure a constant, safe flow of high-voltage electricity into the facility, especially during periods of high demand.
Plans to upgrade FirstEnergy’s transmission system in and around Defiance are also underway. They include upgrading equipment that will provide the ability to remotely isolate a section of a high-voltage power line impacted by severe weather or other unforeseen issues and reconfigure power flow to minimize the length and number of customers impacted by an outage. Work also includes installing a backup power feed that will help keep the lights on for customers if wires or equipment on their regular line are damaged or need to be taken out of service.
Additionally, Toledo Edison is upgrading infrastructure and installing technology to modernize its electric system to help prevent power outages and provide more flexibility in restoring power faster. The work is part of an initial three-year phase of the company’s grid modernization plan and includes installation of new, automated equipment and technology in substations and along power lines serving more than 40,000 customers in parts of Toledo, Maumee, Holland and nearby areas.
While the company cannot eliminate the possibility of outages occurring due to reasons out of our control, like severe weather, it has taken steps to minimize the length and impact of service interruptions when they do occur. The work underway in Toledo will provide new technology and backup power lines for many customers, reducing many power interruptions to just a brief or momentary outage. This work builds upon system upgrades that were completed last year in the greater Toledo area. Additional modernization work is planned across the region through 2022.
Toledo Edison’s commitment to customers extends far beyond the delivery of safe and reliable electricity. The company was recently recognized as a trusted and top performing utility in customer satisfaction during the COVID-19 pandemic in a national study evaluating the performance of electric, natural gas and combination utilities across the country.
Escalent, a consumer research firm, named Toledo Edison to its 2021 Most Trusted Utility Brands list within the Cogent Syndicated Utility Trusted Brand & Customer Engagement™: Residential study, which is based on a nationwide survey of more than 76,000 residential customers of the 140 largest U.S. utility companies.
During the pandemic, the company was able to help its customers get back on their feet by temporarily suspending service shutoffs, offering additional financial assistance programs and supporting community organizations that help those impacted by the pandemic, all while delivering the power our customers depended on more than ever as they worked and learned from home.