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Two major turbines to remain offline well into hurricane season, S&WB says

Published: Jun. 9, 2021 at 3:10 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 9, 2021 at 10:28 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Repairs to two major power-generating turbines have been delayed, which may cause the system to operate without optimal power supply and backup well into hurricane season.

An electrical component of one of the city’s power-generating turbines has knocked the machine offline for approximately eight more weeks, according to the New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board.

Officials say a rain event on Sat., June 5 tripped Turbine 4 and it could not be brought back online. The problem was diagnosed with an electrical component.

On June 8, a contractor determined three electrical components need to be replaced. Because of the age of Turbine 4, which was built in 1915, the parts must be custom-made.

The initial timeframe for fabrication of the parts is approximately eight weeks.

Turbine 4 originally tripped during Hurricane Zeta and was only brought back online one month before the latest rain event.

“We recognize this timeframe takes us into the thick of Hurricane Season,” S&WB officials said in a press release Wednesday, June 9. “We are working with our contractor to investigate all possible options to expedite this process.”

Nationwide steel shortages are also delaying repairs needed on Turbine 5.

“We know that fully modernizing our power generation system is key to both the future of this agency and this city,” said Ghassan Korban, Executive Director, Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans. “That is why we are working tirelessly, in coordination with Entergy, to bring a dedication Entergy substation to our Carrollton Water Plant as we as bringing a new, state-of-the-art Turbine to our arsenal of power.”

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