Aerial tree trimming planned for eastern Wisconsin
PEWAUKEE, Wis. A helicopter and heavy-duty air saw will be used beginning this week to trim trees along two 345-kilovolt and 138-kV transmission lines, from Germantown to Mishicot, Wis.
American Transmission Co. has contracted with Aerial Solutions, Inc. to manage vegetation growth along its transmission line corridors. The helicopters used by Aerial Solutions are equipped with heavy-duty air saws with rotary blades suspended on a 90- to 100-foot vertical boom.
When compared to the work of ground-based crews, the aerial saw has been highly efficient. Typically it takes ground crews several days to accomplish what an aerial saw can in just a few hours, said Ben Gura, ATC senior vegetation management specialist. Since the work is weather-dependent, it could take several weeks for the aerial saw to complete the vegetation maintenance along 172 miles.
Managing the growth of trees and other vegetation near high-voltage transmission lines is important to help ensure public safety and electric system reliability. ATC performs routine vegetation management on its 9,530 miles of transmission lines in five-year cycles.