Wis. (AP) - Dairyland Power Cooperative is using a unique air crane to avoid disrupting environmentally sensitive land as it rebuilds a high-voltage transmission line in western Wisconsin.
The Sikorsky helicopter is capable of lifting four full-sized pickup trucks and is used for challenging construction projects, logging and fighting forest fires.
The flying workhorse is operated by Erickson Inc., of Portland, Oregon, and comes at a cost of $300 a minute.
The La Crosse Tribune (http://bit.ly/1NH5x9L ) says Dairyland will use the helicopter to set 21 structures in place for the transmission line. The La Crosse utility is spending $13 million to replace a 13-mile segment of an old power line in La Crosse and Trempealeau counties.
The air crane generates 9,600 horsepower from its two turbines and burns 550 gallons of fuel per hour.
The Sikorsky S-64 Skycrane Helicopter was recently employed in constructing a 115kV transmission line along I-95 in coastal Georgia, as seen in this video:
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