Co-op linemen are a little like mailmen: “Neither snow nor rain nor heat…” will stop them from delivering power. It was 100 degrees on July 28 when Palmetto’s Ben Henry (left) and Donald Cook were converting residences on Hilton Head Island’s Bluebell Lane from overhead to underground service.

THE MULTI-YEAR project to remove co-op overhead power lines and poles on Hilton Head Island is now 78 percent complete, according to Palmetto Electric V.P., Engineering & Operations Wil Saleeby. Here are a few other noteworthy numbers from Saleeby:

  • 2,178 poles removed
  • 903 overhead transformers removed
  • 1,248 services converted
  • 37 miles of overhead feeder and 64 miles of other overhead lines have been replaced with 42 miles of underground feeder and 106 miles of other underground lines

The project, begun in 2004 and projected to cost $34.77 million, is funded by franchise fees collected through a line item added only to Hilton Head co-op members’ bills. Santee Cooper’s overhead transmission lines are not included in the conversion project.

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