ActewAGL will be carrying out helicopter inspections of overhead powerlines from today 2 December across parts of Canberra. The patrols will run until 16 December (weather permitting), and are an essential part of vegetation management and asset management.
ActewAGL General Manager Network Services Robert Atkin said, “The helicopter patrol is a significant part of our overall network maintenance program and bushfire mitigation strategy. Trees and vegetation growing too close to powerlines can cause blackouts and create safety hazards such as grass fires and bushfires. Trees and vegetation can also restrict access, preventing essential maintenance from being carried out.”
The patrol will inspect for vegetation encroaching on powerlines and will fly at approximately 350 – 500 feet (approx. 110 – 150 metres) in rural areas and above 1000 feet (approx. 310 metres) in urban areas with minimal hovering. The helicopter will be branded with the ActewAGL logo and take-off and landing will be at Canberra Airport.
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The helicopter uses Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) remote sensing technology to determine the distance between powerlines and vegetation. Vegetation deemed too close to powerlines are prioritised for cutting by ActewAGL’s authorised service providers in rural areas, or notifications are sent to customers or ACT Government depending on where trees are located in suburban areas.
The helicopter also takes high resolution pole top images in high bushfire prone (rural) areas to assess the pole top condition and prioritise our preventative maintenance regimes.
ActewAGL will be also posting daily twitter updates to let the community know where the helicopter will be. Follow us at twitter.com/ActewAGL to get up to date information.
For more information or enquiries about the helicopter patrol please contact ActewAGL Technical Enquiries on 6248 3555.
(ActewAGL Media Release)