ITC Midwest released information to inform the community that they will be conducting aerial patrols of high-voltage transmission structures and lines throughout its service territory from approximately August 4th through the 17th, weather permitting. Helicopter patrols will be providing an overall status of the overhead transmission system owned and operated by ITC Midwest.

Vinton lies in the East Central/Southeast Iowa and Northwestern Illinois Region and will be among the towns inspected. 

In our area flights will take place over Cedar Rapids, Clinton, Dubuque, Iowa City, Marengo, Marion, Palo and Vinton as well as the Galena, Illinois area. Iowa counties in the aerial patrol areas include Benton, Cedar, Clinton, Delaware, Dubuque, Iowa, Jackson, Johnson, Jones and Linn, as well as Carroll, Jo Davies, Rock Island and Whiteside in Illinois.

"These patrols are a North American Electrical Reliability Corporation (NERC) requirement for ITC Midwest’s vegetation management program, support proactive maintenance objectives, and align with the company’s model for operational excellence. They include inspections of steel structures, wood poles, conductors (wires), insulators and other equipment. Crews check for damaged or worn equipment and vegetation hazards," the company said.

The flights take place at a low altitudes so that the company can get accurate visual inspections of the equipment for lightning damage, wear, or other potential problems. This is normal. So if you see a low flying helicopter, don't be alarmed during the time frame listed above.

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