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PG&E drones and helicopters will be inspecting Plumas transmission lines over the next couple weeks

PG&E is alerting western Plumas County residents that the utility will be conducting safety inspections Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. through 6 p.m. from April 24 to May 13, weather permitting. Residents can expect to see low-flying helicopters, drones and a number of utility trucks in the area. The helicopters will be flying close to power lines and other transmission equipment.

The inspections use proprietary technology called autonomous image capturing that is pre-programmed to capture hi-res images only of transmission structures. This means the helicopter will fly low, about 250-300 feet above ground, continuously and may need to make several passes along the transmission lines.

The System Inspections program accelerates inspection cycles beyond compliance regulations to align with wildfire risk. It’s one of many initiatives PG&E has undertaken to protect grid safety and reliability, with other measures including enhanced vegetation management and system-hardening.

The ongoing program is designed to find and fix potential risks to the safety and reliability of PG&E’s grid. PG&E is prioritizing work in areas of extreme (Tier 3) and elevated (Tier 2) wildfire risk as defined by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) High Fire-Threat District Map. Equipment along electric transmission lines located in Tier 3 and Tier 2 areas will be evaluated more frequently, while infrastructure in non-high fire-threat areas will be inspected at least every five years.

PG&E crews will promptly repair or make safe the highest-priority conditions found through inspections. Crews will repair all other conditions as part of the company’s routine work

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