Emergency measures required to restore safe line conditions

1/29/2003Wien

The loads of the high-voltage lines running from the north to the south of Austria exceeded the safety limit and reached the critical thermal point in the night from January 27 to 28. To restore safe line conditions emergency measures had to be initiated immediately.

This dramatic development was caused by torrential rainfalls and the snow melting. The results are high water regimes in Austria’s big rivers and thus high outputs at the run-of-river stations on the Danube, Inn and Enns rivers.

Since the high-voltage lines, which date back to the 1960s, were unable to cope with these high current flows, among others the following emergency measures had to be initiated to stabilize the network situation. The thermal power production in the north had to be reduced, thermal power plants in the south had to be switched in, the hydropower plants in the south had to be accelerated. These measures mean additional costs for the mains power supply and also a restriction of the provisions in the storage power plants that are important for a guaranteed network supply.

The management board of VERBUND-Austrian Power Grid (APG) points out that a guaranteed and safe supply is only possible and considerable bottleneck management expenses can only be saved if the gap in the Styria line is closed.