RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Dominion Virginia Power is taking a fresh look at putting some of its power lines underground.
The energy provider says a preliminary analysis shows that putting the most frequently damaged power lines underground would sharply speed power restorations after major storms.
Undergrounding 20 percent of Dominion's worst-performing residential lines could reduce the number of repairs required to restore power to all customers as a result of damage by 63 percent.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch
reports that company officials didn't provide a projected cost for undergrounding lines. But Virginia regulators have estimated that putting overhead electric lines underground statewide would cost $83.3 billion, an average cost per customer of $27,000. And it would take decades to complete.
Dominion is the state's largest electric utility, serving 2.3 million customers.