Are You PRC-005-6 Compliant Ready?

11 December, 2019 | Blog

PIERRE-MICHEL DUFOUR, P.Eng.

Electrical Engineer

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Are you a Transmission Owner (TO), a Generator Owner (GO) or a Distribution Provider (DP) that owns or operates elements of the Bulk Electric System(1) in Ontario? Are you candidate for complying with the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) standard? Then you will be required to comply with PRC-005-6 Protection System, Automatic Reclosing and Sudden Pressure Relaying Maintenance (3), which governs the maintenance of protection systems.

If so, you did or eventually will be subject to the IESO self-certifications or the audits since this Standard was enforced by the IESO Market Authority Compliance Division (MACD) since 2016. As of October 2019, 30% of your facilities (by market participant) were expected to be compliant with PRC-005-6; you must now prepare for the next milestone on April 1, 2020 (refer to the PRC-005-6 implementation plan for more details on enforcement dates and requirements).

Elements to verify

To ensure your organization is PRC-005-6 compliant ready, here is a list of items you may want to consider for your Protection System Maintenance Program (PSMP):

  • Identify the BES elements within your facility.
  • List any remedial action schemes (RAS), underfrequency load shedding systems (UFLS), undervoltage load shedding systems (UVLS), automatic reclosing schemes and blackstart resources.
  • Identify components that must be maintained under PRC-005-06 requirements, i.e., components installed to detect faults on BES elements.
  • Identify applicable maintenance activities and intervals based on specific installation details. For example, does each protective relay have monitored internal self-diagnostics and power supply alarms? (This would help extend the maintenance interval from 6 to 12 years2.)
  • Prepare a test plan based on required maintenance activities.
  • Plan resources, including coordination with authorities that share common infrastructure (e.g., protective relays, RAS and transfer trips) to perform maintenance activities.
  • Prepare detailed reports that provide maintenance results and highlight any unresolved maintenance issues. If required, self-report any breaches.

Major maintenance campaigns must be planned every six years, and regular maintenance activities that are also related to the PRC-005-6 standard must be integrated into your facility’s overall maintenance planning tool.

Count on BBA to help you

Operation managers and compliance teams in your organization could face challenges trying to understand which PRC-005-6 requirements apply to your facility when navigating through NERC and IESO documentation. This is even truer if you have to prepare your documentation in reaction to an audit or a self-certification prompted by the MACD.

BBA has proven experience in understanding which requirements apply to a facility, along with preparing and executing the required onsite testing activities. Our goal is to ensure you are PRC-005-6 compliant ready and secure your operations.

1 For a definition of the bulk electric system (BES), refer to the IESO Market Manual 11: Reliability Compliance Part 11.1: Applicability Criteria for Compliance with NERC Reliability Standards and NPCC Criteria.

2 Remember to log all evidence that justifies extending your maintenance intervals; it could save you a lot of time in case of a self-certification or MACD audit.

(3) Refer to Ontario Enforcement Dates for PRC-005-6 Implementation Plan.

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