We continue to make progress on our system reliability with a number of large projects going through the plan- ning, engineering, material procurement, and construction contract award process. Using a combination of Lake Worth Beach crews and contractor crews, we completed numerous system hardening and reliability improvement projects that are already yielding significant reductions in outages. Resi- dents and the general public have been able to see firsthand the work of crews installing new poles, transformers, and power lines. While we track outage data to measure progress, we continue to receive comments from customers that they are experiencing fewer outages than in the past. Recognition from customers of improved performance is a reassurance that we’re on the right path.
Continuing on our efforts initiated in 2018 and 2019, in 2020, we significantly increased our attention to rudimentary outage prevention efforts, such as tree trimming, vegetation clear- ing, and installation of animal guards to reduce the ability of climbing wildlife to gain access to our power lines, insulators, and transformers. We also introduced technology such as infrared scanning of critical system components to identify hot spots, a potential source of future outages, and initiated pre- ventive maintenance. Additionally, we increased our practice of maintenance outages to inspect and repair equipment well ahead of the air conditioning season to reliably sustain higher electric loads ahead.
The City’s Water Utilities Department provides potable drinking water, collection of wastewater and stormwater throughout the City and service areas. The water division operates and maintains a 17.4 MGD water treatment plant that combines lime softened and reverse osmosis treated water that is distributed through a 168 mile watermain piping system to customers. This division also maintains over 1,100 fire hydrants in the system throughout the service area.
The sewer division collects wastewater from customers in a 125 mile gravity and pressure pipe system with 33 city owned and maintained wastewater pump stations and several private pump stations. The sewer division also operates and maintains a regional Master Pump Station that collects wastewater from Lake Worth Beach, Lantana, Atlantis, Manalapan, South Palm Beach, Palm Beach State College, Lake Clarke Shores, and Palm Springs and sends it to the East Central Regional Water Reclamation Facility for treatment.
The storm division collects and maintains stormwater throughout the City in stormwater collection system with 46 outfalls to the Lake Worth lagoon.
The City is a joint permittee of the Palm Beach County Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit. This permit allows a permittee to discharge stormwater from its stormwater collection and conveyance system into a receiving water owned by the state and/or federal government. For more information on the permit, visit www.pbco-npdes.org