Benefits of Underground Electricity Connections versus Overhead Powerline Connections

December 4, 2017

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Viewed from a strictly aesthetic point of view, underground electricity connections are obviously popular because they free land from overhead powerline connections. Strung in great loops, ugly overhead lines obstruct views. They also go down during a storm. Okay, so buried cables do require a greater initial investment, but great savings come to those who are prepared to make that investment.

Overhead Cables are Exposed

Exposed to what, we might ask? Perhaps an animal has mistaken the wooden or metal tower for a tree. A squirrel skips to the top, it jumps the cables, and there's a massive short circuit. Every property on that parcel of land loses power because of this poor little critter. A falling tree can cause the same problem, and so can a raging storm or any other type of extreme weather. Overhead powerline connections are exposed to all of these dangers. Meanwhile, below the ground, an expertly installed underground electricity connection remains live, no matter how hard the wind blows or how many squirrels move into the neighbourhood.

Negating Visual Obstructions

Photographers take pictures of historical districts. They lovingly touch-up those images. Sadly, that image editor can spend hours doing visual edits to remove overhead powerlines out of a pleasing snapshot. Imagine then, how those unsightly cables influence the citizens living in the area. There's just no getting around this point, not unless the cables are installed underground. Overhead cables and their supporting structures are a blot on the landscape, which is why council authorities gravitate towards underground solutions. Out on an industrial complex, the overhead system is seen as the more logical connection method.

Public Safety Issues

If a contractor is erecting a scaffolding tower, the competent person in charge has to plan around the overhead powerline connections. Even kids need protection from this elevated hazard. A child's balloon, perhaps coated with an aluminium skin, can short-circuit overhead cables. Kites, climbing hazards, model aircrafts, even the family cat, all of these common events carry a risk when they take place near an overhead system. Of course, there are always large red signs in place to warn of these hazards, but the danger still exists.

In terms of initial outlay costs, underground cables are a little more expensive than a solution that uses at-height cabling. However, the ground covering those subterranean cables does act as a natural buffer zone. With that buffer in place, no lightning strikes, no playful critters, and no falling tree branches will ever cause a power outage. Indeed, because of these reasons, overhead powerline connections are the more reliable option, plus they just look better, especially in an area renowned for its visual appeal.

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