JUNO BEACH — In the first project of its kind in Northwest Florida, Florida Power & Light Company has finished replacing overhead power lines with more reliable underground lines to continue improving service and speed storm restoration for customers in a west Pensacola neighborhood.
FPL completed the undergrounding project for 131 homes in the Myrtle Grove community as part of a pilot to find cost-effective ways to put power lines underground. Trees and vegetation blowing into overhead power lines are a leading cause of outages, particularly during severe weather. Putting power lines underground improves reliability during good weather and bad.
“Because of the huge old tree canopy, there was often severe damage and power outages when hurricanes or major storms came through this neighborhood,” said longtime Myrtle Grove resident Jo Eichelberger. “So, you can imagine how thrilled I was to see the underground service come. Also, I’m very particular about my yard and put a lot of time and work into it, so I’m pleased that when the job was over you couldn’t tell they were here."
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Denise Kelly, another longtime resident, added: “I’m excited to get the new underground service. They were very professional and let us know everything they were going to do before they did it. In the past, we would often get an outage when there was a storm. Even when it was taken care of as quickly as possible, it’s much better not to have an outage in the first place.”
FPL plans to bring the benefits of undergrounding to more neighborhoods in Northwest Florida and throughout the entire FPL service area.
More than 500,000 customers in Northwest Florida who were served by Gulf Power began receiving service under the FPL name on Jan. 1. The undergrounding program is one example of the benefits customers in Northwest Florida are already receiving as a result of the integration with FPL. Since joining the FPL family in 2019, the reliability of service for customers in Northwest Florida has improved by more than 50 percent.
For more information about NextEra Energy companies, visit www.NextEraEnergy.com, www.FPL.com, and www.NextEraEnergyResources.com.
This article originally appeared on Northwest Florida Daily News: FPL completes first Northwest Florida underground powerlines project