August 31, 2018

Eversource expands drone inspections

Contributed photo
Contributed photo
An Eversource drone operator inspecting transmission lines.

Eversource said Friday that it will be using drones for routine inspections of its high-voltage infrastructure in Connecticut, as well as after major storms to assess damage.

The utility parent continued this summer to announce annual infrared helicopter inspections, but it said drones will decrease the need for helicopters, reducing fossil fuel use and costs that are ultimately paid by customers.

"This high-tech solution provides a critical, bird's-eye view, enabling us to identify any potential issues in an effort to ensure our customers have the energy they need for every moment of their lives," Craig Hallstrom, Eversource's president of regional electric operations, said in a statement.

The company said the drones will be piloted by certified operators and that they won't compromise the privacy of nearby property owners.

Eversource told the New Hampshire Union Leader in 2016 that it had occasionally used drones in Connecticut and was still weighing at that time whether to expand their use.

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