Sturgeon Electric Company, Inc. (Sturgeon Electric) recently made a little piece of history in the Pacific Northwest when they used Human External Cargo (HEC) helicopter methods to successfully perform transmission line work for Bonneville Power Administration (BPA).
Sturgeon Electric installed 23 aviation marker balls and associated hardware atop BPA’s Big Eddy-Knight 500kV transmission line, which crosses the Columbia River Gorge near The Dalles, Oregon. It was the first time the federal nonprofit agency allowed a transmission line contractor to use (Class B) HEC, which includes flying line workers below a helicopter in an “air chair.”
A beautiful spray day in Eastern Washington
Sturgeon Electric Company Inc began construction of the Central Ferry-Lower Monumental Transmission Line Project in May. The new line is expected to carry over 800 additional megawatts of renewable wind energy, enough to power about half a million Northwest homes when the wind is blowing.
The 38-mile, 500-kilovolt line in Washington will connect the new Central Ferry Substation in Garfield County to the existing Lower Monumental Substation in Walla Walla County. It is expected to be energized in December 2015.