BGE Linemen in Scuba

Frontline: How BGE’s linemen repair electric cables underwater.

One skiff, barge and diver later, BGE underground lines crew safely makes repairs to damaged cable on a frigid fall day.

Story Topics

Delivery, Reliability, and Safety ALL: Crew

Underground electric cables are often not the easiest to repair – finding the issue, excavating and confined spaces all contribute to these jobs’ complexity. But when the cable lies 700 feet offshore on the bottom of Bear Creek, another layer of planning and collaboration is necessary.

A quick ride in a skiff takes the crew to a barge anchored where the cable needs repair.

 

Crew leader TJ Sheubrooks (far right) briefs the team (from L-R) Cable Splicers John Snyder and Tom Borlie and crew leaders Ronnie Walker and Chris Butts prior to starting the job.

 

A contract diver is brought in to assist with the job and prepares to find the cable underwater. Once he locates it, he will attach it to a crane.

 

Success! The cable is attached to the crane and the diver signals that it’s ready to be lifted onto the barge.

 

The cable is hoisted and placed on stabilizers that allow the crew to make necessary repairs.

 

Borlie guides the cable to the working platform on the barge.

 

Supports and jacks are welded into place to keep the cable from moving, maintaining a safe work environment.

 

Borlie and Walker begin the process of removing the cable’s steel armor so that repairs can be made.

 

Damage to the cable could have been caused by a boat or anchor.

 

Damaged sections of the cable are cut out and removed so that new cable can be spliced in and attached.

 

Battery cutters are used to sever three-phase wires that run through the highly insulated and protected cable.

 

BGE’s crews work in challenging conditions year-round to maintain the safe and reliable delivery of energy for our customers.