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High wire hydro repairs

BC Hydro power line technicians from Vernon recently completed maintenance on a 500 kilovolt line in the North Okanagan that runs between Ashton Creek and Selkirk.

The specialized crew used a helicopter to help install more than 2,000 spacer dampers and 129 arcing horns on the line over six days.

Spacer dampers hold the individual transmission lines apart.

They keep the overhead lines from contacting each other in stormy weather and causing outages. The new spacer dampers have high grade rubber to absorb the impact of inclement weather and extend the line lifespan of the lines by 70 years.

The new arcing horns protect the insulators, which connect lines to the towers.

To complete the work, power line technicians climbed the towers or landed on the top of the towers using a helicopter, and lowered themselves into buggies. The buggies were suspended from the line and were moved using motors.

The work is part of an ongoing provincial project. BC Hydro will replace about 20,000 space dampers and 1,100 arcing horns across the province this year.

The work in Vernon was completed on March 20.

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