Tioga Point campsites reopen after stress alert
National Grid repairs an electric cable under Lac Raquette
By Mike Lynch
Tioga Point State Campgroundrecently designated as unavailable, will after all open this season with camping resuming on Friday.
The reopening is a big change from the state’s stance earlier this month, when it said the boat access site on Raquette Lake would be closed for the 2024 camping season after two incidents in 2021. when people have reported feeling a tingling sensation and stray voltage. was detected later.
National Grid later determined that the stray voltage likely originated from undersea utility cables that had traveled near the boat dock at Tioga Point, company spokesman Jared Paventi said.
The issue prompted the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation to shut down the site “out of an abundance of caution.”
Paventi told Explorer in early May that the work should prevent stray voltage from occurring and that a multi-year project would likely be needed as a follow-up.
But now the state, the city of Long Lake and National Grid say the power company fixed the problem in mid-May when its crews replaced 22,000 feet of cable in and out of the water.
“There was a change in tactics once we got down to business,” Paventi said. “Our team found a solution that solved the problem without further disturbing the lake or private property along its shores. Once we implemented and tested the solution, we determined that the goal of eliminating stray voltages had been achieved and a larger project was no longer necessary. »
He said extensive testing determined that the stray voltage was now “below the safe threshold”.
Long Lake supervisor Clay Arsenault applauded DEC and National Grid.
“I’m just tickled with how it turned out,” he said. “They were both awesome. Both agencies were amazing to work with.
He said he discovered the problem a month ago and initially expressed serious concerns about the timing in a strongly worded letter to National Grid. After that, things changed.
“It went from National Grid and DEC telling me it was going to be a three-year fix, and the campground was going to be closed, to these weekly meetings and everyone just listening to each other and done in three weeks,” he said.
Paventi declined to go into details of the cable work except to say: “National Grid carries out inspection and maintenance of its systems in accordance with regulations and follows established operating procedures for stray voltage complaints. .”
As for campers with reservations, contractor DEC Reserve America contacted them on May 17, giving them until Monday to reinstate their plans.
Since May 24, all unreserved campsites are available for reservation to the general public.
Tioga Point State Campground is located on the east side of Raquette Lake. It contains 15 lean-tos and 10 tent sites, but has no drinking water.
Paventi said the 2021 stray voltage incidents on Raquette Lake were limited to the state campground. But in 2020, he said “an Indian Point client received a shock when changing a well pump on his property. National Grid followed its stray voltage procedure and the incident was subsequently closed.
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