Electric sabotage? Not!
The alleged vandalism/sabotage of two electrical towers in Ivy– serious enough to warrant an FBI investigation– turned out to be neither. Dominion Virginia Power now says it was all a case of miscommunication.
According to company spokesperson Karl Neddenien, a contract maintenance crew was performing a routine bolt replacement procedure when they ran out of materials. The crew left the work site in a safe condition for a two-week period to have new steel bolts fabricated.
Meanwhile, a local Dominion crew, unaware of the refurbishment work, checked on the site in the West Leigh neighborhood and discovered the missing bolts. They immediately reported the problem to Dominion, which in turn notified local law enforcement authorities.
Exactly one week passed before the communication error was discovered. The FBI and police investigations were halted earlier today, according to Albemarle County police detective Phil Giles.
Neddenien calls the miscommunication a "mistake," and adds that he regrets that the company error caused "some consternation in the neighborhood" which he would like to see "corrected soon."
Dominion Virginia Power is still investigating how the company might avoid such communication difficulties in the future, Neddenien says.
The high voltage transmission towers are part of an interconnected grid system of over 6,000 miles of transmission lines that transport power across Virginia, according to company spokesperson David Botkins.