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I&M to Use Helicopter for Power Line Improvements in Eastern Fort Wayne

January 14, 2022

 FORT WAYNE, Jan. 14, 2022 – Residents and motorists in eastern Fort Wayne may see a helicopter working on a transmission power line project near unique looking BOLD transmission towers early next week.

Work is scheduled to begin the morning of Monday, Jan. 17, in an area northeast of the intersection of Webster Road and U.S. 30. The helicopter will proceed north to an area near I-469 and U.S. 24. The helicopter and ground crews will install ropes between the towers, covering about 4 miles. The crews will install eight sets of ropes.

The work using the helicopter is expected to continue throughout the day and may extend into Tuesday. After the ropes are installed, ground crews will begin using the ropes to pull power lines to the towers, a process that will take about two weeks. Weather conditions could alter the schedule.

The line installation is part of I&M’s Eastern Fort Wayne Transmission Line Rebuild Project. The    $20 million project involves rebuilding 12 miles of a 138-kilovolt transmission line connecting a substation southeast of Fort Wayne with the large Robinson Park substation near I-69 and I-469 north of the city.

The project will strengthen the local electric transmission system, reducing the likelihood of power outages and upgrading to support economic development.

Next week’s work is for a segment of the project. Lines will be installed on additional segments to the northwest in coming weeks and months without the use of the helicopter.

As part of the project, I&M will replace existing lattice towers with innovative Breakthrough Overhead Line Design® (BOLD) structures, which suspend lines from a crescent-shaped cross-arm balanced on a steel pole. The single pole takes up less land than the lattice towers and has a lower profile. The BOLD lines are also used west of Fort Wayne and along I-69 south of Fort Wayne near the Marion area.

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ABOUT INDIANA MICHIGAN POWER: Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) is headquartered in Fort Wayne, and its approximately 2,100 employees serve more than 600,000 customers. More than 85% of its energy delivered in 2020 was emission-free.  I&M has at its availability various sources of generation including 2,278 MW of nuclear generation in Michigan, 450 MW of purchased wind generation from Indiana, more than 22 MW of hydro generation in both states, nearly 35 MW of large-scale solar generation in both states, and 2,620 MW of coal-fueled generation in Indiana.

ABOUT AMERICAN ELECTRIC POWER: American Electric Power, based in Columbus, Ohio, is focused on building a smarter energy infrastructure and delivering new technologies and custom energy solutions to our customers. AEP’s approximately 16,800 employees operate and maintain the nation’s largest electricity transmission system and more than 223,000 miles of distribution lines to efficiently deliver safe, reliable power to nearly 5.5 million regulated customers in 11 states. AEP also is one of the nation’s largest electricity producers with approximately 30,000 megawatts of diverse generating capacity, including more than 5,500 megawatts of renewable energy. AEP’s family of companies includes utilities AEP Ohio, AEP Texas, Appalachian Power (in Virginia and West Virginia), AEP Appalachian Power (in Tennessee), Indiana Michigan Power, Kentucky Power, Public Service Company of Oklahoma, and Southwestern Electric Power Company (in Arkansas, Louisiana, east Texas and the Texas Panhandle). AEP also owns AEP Energy, AEP Energy Partners, AEP OnSite Partners, and AEP Renewables, which provide innovative competitive energy solutions nationwide. For more information, visit aep.com.



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