NERC Case Notes: Reliability Standard BAL-005-0b | White & Case LLP International Law Firm, Global Law Practice
NERC Case Notes: Reliability Standard BAL-005-0b

NERC Case Notes: Reliability Standard BAL-005-0b

White & Case NERC Database

El Paso Electric Company, FERC Docket No. NP10-25-000 (December 30, 2009)

Reliability Standard: BAL-005-0b

Requirement: R17

Violation Risk Factor: Medium

Violation Severity Level: Not provided

Region: WECC

Issue: EPE failed to calibrate time error devices annually against a common reference with minimal accuracy values as required by the Standard. EPE used an Arbiter Systems Global Positioning Satellite clock time error device synchronized to a GPS satellite timing signal that was traceable to the National Institute of Standards and Technology; NERC concluded that an annual calibration check was required even for devices that are "black box" Arbiter System GPS linked devices with no method for performing calibration adjustments.

Finding: Alleged violation occurred between June 18, 2007, when the standard became enforceable, through May 8, 2009. In determining the penalty for aggregate violations, NERC gave credit for (1) self-reporting of two violations; (2) cooperation through the audit process; (3) evidence of an effective compliance culture; and (4) these being EPE's first violations.

Penalty: $15,000 (aggregate for multiple violations)

FERC Order: Issued March 15, 2010 (no further review)

El Paso Electric Company, FERC Docket No. NP10-25-000 (December 30, 2009)

Reliability Standard: BAL-005-0b

Requirement: R8

Violation Risk Factor: Medium

Violation Severity Level: Not provided

Region: WECC

Issue: Two self-reported violations: (1) EPE failed to identify and make adjustments required in its EMS to account for changes in the Time Standard Interface (TSI) that would permit the TSI to restart automatically after a software update, adjustments necessary to keep primary and backup frequency sources from failing; and (2) EPE failed to provide redundant frequency metering equipment that could activate automatically upon detection of a failure of the primary frequency source.

Finding: The first violation occurred from September 25, 2007 through December 21, 2007. The second violation occurred from February 20, 2008 through March 24, 2008. In determining the penalty for aggregate violations, NERC gave credit for (1) self-reporting of two violations; (2) cooperation through the audit process; (3) evidence of an effective compliance culture; and (4) these being EPE's first violations.

Penalty: $15,000 (aggregate for multiple violations)

FERC Order: Issued March 15, 2010 (no further review)