Wisconsin Public Services Improves Utility Restoration Using Outage Management System

Faced with frequent utility outage events coupled with manual dispatch processes, Wisconsin Public Service implemented a mobile-enabled outage management system, improving restoration times, reducing radio traffic, and streamlining the entire dispatch operation.


The Challenge

Wisconsin Public Service (WPS) serves more than 400,000 utility customers and 300,000 natural gas customers in northeastern Wisconsin. Because the state of Wisconsin experiences frequent outages caused by high winds and snowy or icy weather, dispatchers and field crews at WPS often deal with outages caused by fallen trees or frozen power lines.

Previously, when a call came into its dispatch center, WPS linemen would have to write their outage orders on paper forms based on the dispatchers’ relayed information. This cumbersome process also left field workers completely dependent on information they received from dispatchers, causing more radio traffic and less time for the dispatch center and the field to address other issues at hand. WPS began searching for an outage management system that would help it restore power faster to its customers, while providing higher-quality outage information to its field crews and dispatch center.

The Solution

WPS selected Hexagon Safety & Infrastructure’s Intergraph InService outage management system (OMS) with mobile capabilities to streamline its dispatch operations and provide more information to field crews.

Using mobile technology built into Intergraph InService OMS, field crews at WPS can see exactly what the dispatchers see in the office. Dispatchers know where an outage is, what may have caused the outage, and who and where the nearest person is to repair the affected area based on a map view of the electrical and street network.

For the dispatch control center, Intergraph InService reduces radio traffic and frees up dispatchers to handle other tasks during major outage events. Since its implementation, Intergraph InService has also reduced restoration times for the utility provider’s customers.

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