Wood power poles switch to con­crete

Bush Telegraph - - Focus On Farming - By DAVE MUR­DOCH

Mo­torists will have no­ticed that Scan­power is busy re­plac­ing hard­wood poles.

These were in­stalled in the Scan­power net­work up to the 1970s. From the 1980s on­wards, lines com­pa­nies switched to us­ing con­crete poles which have a longer ser­vice life of at least 60 years and are safer in nu­mer­ous ways.

There are cur­rently 900 hard­wood poles in the net­work and Scan­power plans to have them all re­placed within five years at a cost of $1 mil­lion per year. Al­ready in April and May 48 poles have been re­placed.

There is an an­nual timetable so that cus­tomers can be warned in ad­vance. The timetable is de­ter­mined by the con­di­tion of the poles.

Up­com­ing ar­eas for clus­ters of pole changes in­clude Range Rd, Bluff Rd, Har­ris Rd, Ox­ford Rd, River Rd, We­ber Rd, Route 52, To­tarama­honga Rd, and nu­mer­ous ur­ban poles in ser­vice lanes and the like.

In con­junc­tion with this work, Scan­power is tak­ing the op­por­tu­nity to in­stall ad­di­tional switches on the net­work.

CEO Lee Bet­tles says, “This al­lows us to re­duce the num­ber of cus­tomers af­fected by an out­age, whether that is planned or un­planned.”

Scan­power is con­tin­u­ing to win con­tracts be­yond the Tararua. Lee says, “We were re­cently suc­cess­ful in se­cur­ing power line re­lo­ca­tion, street light­ing and elec­tri­cal con­tracts for the Peka Peka to Otaki Ex­press­way project. Scan­power teams com­menced work on site re­cently and will be ini­tially de­ployed there for around three months. We will re­turn to do the street­lights and other elec­tri­cal work later next year.”

He adds: “Also of in­ter­est, this week a small team from Scan­power will be work­ing in the Chatham Is­lands (a reg­u­lar cus­tomer of ours) un­der­tak­ing power line sur­veys, GPS lo­ca­tion record­ing, and as­set con­di­tion re­port­ing. We an­tic­i­pate that this will lead into fur­ther main­te­nance work over the in the com­ing years.”

LINESMEN re-at­tach the lines and switches on Donghi Rd, Mako­tuku.

HEAVY equip­ment for han­dling heavy con­crete poles.

A Scan­power gen­er­a­tor keeps power run­ning to the farm on Donghi Rd.

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