The weather hasn't exactly been frightful so far this winter, but Greenville city residents surely can remember what it's like to shiver in dark homes when the power goes out during a winter storm.
So it's good news, indeed, that Greenville City Council has a sense of urgency about proceeding with plans to begin burying power lines in the city. ...
Burying power lines is about public safety. Going for days without heat during bitterly cold weather is dangerous for the elderly, small children and people with health problems. And many people in the city cannot afford to take refuge in hotel rooms during an ice storm that takes out power lines.
Many of the city's oldest neighborhoods shoulder a disproportionate share of the burden during terrible winter weather. They deserve a more reliable system of electricity distribution.
Also, overhead power lines detract from the city's attractiveness. Burying such lines will improve the appearance of neighborhoods and business districts.
Underground power lines are more reliable and help reduce power outages. That's a powerful incentive to begin burying some of the oldest parts of Duke's system. And it's worth noting that most lines in new neighborhoods and commercial areas are placed underground.