ESSENTIAL Energy will be taking to the skies in January to capture a snapshot of the electricity network's condition as part of an ongoing asset inspection program.
A fixed wing plane will help identify damaged or deteriorating network assets and potential vegetation growing too close to powerlines in rural locations throughout the local government areas of Nambucca, Kempsey, MidCoast and Port Macquarie-Hastings.
"These aerial patrols are part of Essential Energy's Bushfire Risk Management Plan and the data captured will help ensure the safety and reliability of the network," operations manager Mid North Coast, Mathew Reedy, said.
"The program will inspect the pole top condition of power poles across approximately 1000 kilometres of our Mid North Coast network.
"Aerial patrols are an effective way to view our network assets to assess if vegetation is encroaching on powerlines or whether pole top hardware is damaged or ageing.
"Essential Energy may also occasionally use drones to inspect the electricity network in areas that are sensitive or inaccessible using conventional methods."
If the inspections identify an issue with the network, Essential Energy will contact affected landowners and organise crews to attend and undertake any necessary repairs.