Reed & Reed crews have completed installing two new submarine power cables under Seneca Lake in upstate New York. The cables are each 16,000 feet long and lay on the lake bottom where water depths reach 600 feet. Near shore where the water is shallow the cables were installed in trenches and backfilled. Reed & Reed’s work also included installing new riser structures and switches on both the east and west sides of Seneca Lake where the new lines come ashore. Fiber optic data and communications lines were also installed as part of the project scope.
Once the new cables were installed and energized Reed & Reed removed four existing cables that followed the same route but were installed in the 1940s. The new cables are a significant upgrade to the local transmission grid and increase reliability as well as adding back-up capacity.
The project was years in the planning stages. The new submarine cables were manufactured for Reed & Reed to exacting specifications by the Kerite Company, cabled together and armored in Florida, and delivered to the area by rail on a 150,000-pound cable reel that Reed & Reed loaded onto its barge for the trips across the lake.
Increasingly challenging fall weather in the Finger Lakes region forced the cable laying barge into safe harbor at times but the Reed & Reed crews found calm water work windows in which to install the new lines. Hats off to the entire Reed & Reed project crew.