Came the Drones -- PP&L Using Drones to Inspect Power Lines in Our Area
Residents of the Great Mount Pocono Community may start seeing drones in their neighborhoods.
These are operated by PP&L, which started using the machines to inspect power lines in 2015. The company was one of the first to obtain FAA approval to use the aircraft for inspection purposes. “Drones are a technology we believe can assist us in our efforts to strengthen reliability for customers,” said PPL spokesman Joe Nixon. “It’s another tool in our toolbox and will supplement current methods, which also include manned helicopter patrols and patrols and observations from the ground.”
The drones are operated by license pilots, who are required to maintain visual lines of sight with the aircraft at all times. The drones are about three feet wide, weigh about 20 lbs with the camera attached, and are limited to flying up to 200 feet high and 100 mph. However, the inspection drones will be moving much more slowly than that. While the drones have various configurations and colors, disappointingly, PP&L has no plans to make the drones look like dragons in the sky. The drones will be photographing only the lines, poles, and equipment; PP&L says measures are in place to ensure privacy of the surrounding neighborhood. Anyone with questions or concerns can contact PP&L at 570-342-5775