AEP will use helicopter to maintain lines

Published 11:23 pm Saturday, August 21, 2004

By Staff
FORT WAYNE, Ind. - American Electric Power will conduct vegetation management helicopter patrols of its high-voltage transmission lines in Indiana, Michigan and Northwest Ohio throughout the next two weeks as part of its ongoing program to maintain the reliabity of the electric transmission system.
The patrols will begin Monday and continue through Friday, Sept. 3.
Patrols will be done in Northwest Ohio including Lima, Findlay and Fremont; South Bend, Ind., and Benton Harbor, Mich., areas; Fort Wayne, Ind., area including Van Wert and Paulding, Ohio; Muncie and Marion, Ind., areas; and AEP lines on the eastern side of Indiana.
During patrols, the helicopter, flying at a speed of about 75 knots, will pass about 50 to 100 feet above transmission lines, ussually in a single pass.
The flights will be completed between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. daily (including weekends), unless weather or other concerns neesitate extending the flight times.
During patrols, an entire line is patrolled in one flight so the helicopter may follow a line continuously from one area into antoher, such as along a line connecting Fort Wayne to South Bend.
Weather delays could alter the flight schedule by a day or two.
Customers with questions or concerns about aerial patrols should contact AEP. The toll-free phone number for Michigan residents is 800-311-6424.