Power line hit by jet was part of major transmission system

Workers from Georgia Power repair electrical lines near the site of a private jet crash east of the Thomson-McDuffie County Airport. The plane crashed shortly after 8 p.m. Wednesday after hitting the pole.

The power line clipped by the doomed jet that crashed in McDuffie County on Wednes­day night was owned by Georgia Power Co. and is part of a broader system, managed by Georgia Transmission Corp., which delivers electricity from power plants to 39 electric membership corporations serving 3.8 million Georgia customers.


“It’s what is known as a 115kV line, which is usually owned by multiple parties,” said spokesman Steve Chal­ker with Jefferson Energy Coop­erative, which reported a brief outage Wednesday night affecting 5,042 of its customers.

The line can carry 115,000 volts and can vary in height according to terrain and other factors, according to an online fact sheet from Georgia Transmission.

The height range for such lines is 80 to 120 feet for roadside lines and 60 to 80 feet for “cross country” lines.

After the crash, customers in membership cooperatives were without electricity, along with about 3,400 clients of Georgia Power Co., officials said. Most outages were resolved in 30 minutes to an hour.

“It was a part of the Inte­gra­ted Transmission System of Georgia, which carries power from power plants and goes out across the state and feeds individual substations,” Chalker said.

Operators were able to cut off power to the damaged segment and reroute electricity to clients.

Georgia Power spokesman John Kraft said service to most customers was restored, with the exception of one major commercial/industrial facility, which was expected to have power restored Thursday.

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