Reclamation Awards Contract for New Circuit Breakers

Media Contact: John Redding , (208) 378-5212
Craig Sprankle , (509) 633-9503

For Release: February 24, 2004

The Bureau of Reclamation has awarded a $867,951 contract to install five new circuit breakers at Grand Coulee Dam in eastern Washington. Gardner Zemke Co., Albuquerque, New Mexico, was awarded the contract on February 6; they will have one year to complete the work.

The contractor will remove eight 115-kilovolt power circuit breakers; furnish, install, and test five new breakers and three coupling capacitor voltage transformers at a switchyard near the dam. According to officials at Reclamation, the original oil-filled breakers are approximately 40 years old and need to be replaced with higher capacity equipment. The new breakers will be filled with an inert gas and will provide greater reliability for the electrical system.

Grand Coulee Dam is located on the Columbia River and serves as the centerpiece of Reclamation's Columbia Basin Project where it provides water for irrigating more than 600,000 acres of land and is North America's largest hydroelectric facility.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @USBR.