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Springfield Electric customers can expect shorter down times during power outages when a new city-wide fiber optic cable system is installed in 2020.

City leaders approved a $565,295 contract with Quanta Telecom Services for improvements to the electrical services on Oct. 15.

“The initial purpose is to connect all of our electric substations that would provide a backbone connectivity path for our Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system that we are putting in,” Director of Electric Utilities Robert Gardner said.

SCADA allows for the remote operation of the electric substations. The system cuts down on the time it takes to restore power during outages. This new system will eventually be used connect all city offices together.

“We’ll have our own intercity network for connectivity, for communication between city departments and internet between city departments,” Gardner said.

The fiber typically takes around 30 weeks to be delivered. According to Gardner, installation should begin around mid-spring of 2020 with a three to four-month installation time frame.

“It’s definitely an upgrade… It just basically speeds up our power restoration capability,” Gardner said. 

By next year, everyone served by Springfield Electric will benefit from the improvements made by the new fiber optic wire.

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