Penstocks holding up over winter: Marks

Paul Hutchings
Published on February 10, 2014
Despite the extreme winter weather experienced throughout the region, Deer Lake Power says the penstocks at the power station in Deer Lake are running well and have only required an average amount of maintenance.
Paul Hutchings

DEER LAKE — In spite of a severe winter, Deer Lake Power manager Larry Marks said the iconic penstocks are holding up well.

Marks said, the structures that bring water down from the upper Grand River to the powerhouse on Deer Lake, have only an average amount of maintenance.

Some of the penstocks have been in place since the station was built in the 1920s, but Marks said so far they haven’t given the company any problems during the average sub-zero temperatures that have hit the area since the end of November.

“They’ve been there for over 80 years, nothing has happened yet,” said Marks. “But we’re not finding anything wrong, we keep an eye on them and maintain them when we need to, no problems so far.”

He said the penstocks are scheduled for bi-yearly maintenance in the spring. That involves divers inspecting the underwater areas and clearing debris, among other duties.