New process save linemen time

Helicopter assists DSW linemen with insulator change.

Desert Southwest linemen show us an example of an insulator change using an N619DE helicopter. This is a relatively new work process that began early this year. It allows repairs like this to be completed very quickly resulting in shorter outage times and much less cost compared to conventional methods such as bringing in a bucket truck. All required tools and hardware are also flown into the structure tower.

DSW linemen installing new insulator

The first step is the helicopter removes the old insulator from its cradle. The pilot then flies in the new insulator and sets the end of it onto the cradle of the old insulator. The linemen guide the new insulator horizontally into the cradle as the pilot lowers it down. The linemen then attach the insulator to hardware and conductor.


  • By magnus, December 13, 2011 @ 2:11 am

    Wow, that is going to be one of the great procedures going forward. With certain areas the booms are hard to negotiate, not the mention the travel time. Do the costs make this a prohibitive procedure to implement on a large scale though?

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  • By Jose Vestani, August 15, 2012 @ 8:19 pm

    That’s interesting that they have to use a helicopter. I never thought about how they would remove something of that size from such a height.

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