The SPIKE Tool
Cable maintenance personnel must be able to positively ensure an underground electric power cable is de-energized prior to cutting.
Responsible electric power system operating and maintenance procedures stipulate that prior to cutting underground or buried (hidden termination points) electric power cable, it is spiked to ensure it is de-energized.
SPIKE Tool is designed as a safety device for maintenance linemen to prevent injury or loss of life.
SPIKE Tool is designed for single conductor cable.
Cable Spiking Tool Actuation
The unique benefits provided by SPIKE Tool are:
SPIKE Tool provides positive assurance that the cable is not energized
SPIKE Tool is operated remotely thereby removing the cable maintenance personnel from danger if a live cable is spiked
SPIKE Tool can be used on thermoplastic or thermosetting insulation as well as oil impregnated paper insulation
SPIKE Tool can be used on aluminium and lead sheathed cable and interlock armoured cables
SPIKE Tool is designed to ensure the spike pierces the cable directly through it's center core
SPIKE Tool creates minimal cable damage
SPIKE Tool is not cumbersome to use in the field. It weighs only 7 lbs.
SPIKE Tool is fast and easy to operate
A larger tool accommodates cable sizes up to 3-1/2" OD.
WHY SPIKE A CABLE?
Unlike overhead electric power distribution systems, underground or hidden power cable systems cannot be visually traced back to an open point to ensure the cable is isolated.
If, for example, a new transformer must be cut into an existing feeder, a lineman positioning the new transformer between two termination points would be required to cut into a cable. Upon opening a trench, the lineman could see a number of cables identical in appearance. It is difficult to determine which one of the group has been isolated at the termination points.
"As constructed" drawings are often used as a means of identifying cables between termination points but this does not constitute a positive identification. If a trench is dug between two termination points for maintenance purposes, lineman must be certain before they cut the cable that it is de-energized.
As an overall procedure it is first recommended the cable be identified by the use of "as constructed" drawings and an electronic signal (to pulse the cable) placed on the cable at the termination point. The "pulsed" cable is identified at the trench location.
After the cable to be cut has been identified as closely as possible, the last step should be to spike the cable before it is cut. If switching procedures were incorrectly followed or if "as constructed" drawings are in error, cutting a live cable in a trench can be lethal.
Don't Guess...SPIKE it!
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