An 27-metre-long Erickson Air Crane touched down at the Rimbey Airport on Saturday for a refuel before setting off again to continue work on the Western Alberta Transmission Line, lifting and placing sections of transmission structures into place.
Work on the controversial electricity delivery line is ongoing in the Genesee Lake area, progressing south. A spokeswoman with AltaLink said by September, work is expected to be underway in the Rimbey area.
The Erickson S-64F aircraft is the only helicopter in the world with an rear-facing pilot station that allows the pilot to have a full view of the load being placed.
It operates with two 4,800 horsepower engines and can carry over 11,000 kg of load in addition to the almost 50,000 litres of jet fuel it can carry. The American-made helicopters cost approximately $30 million each.
Work on the line began recently after AltaLink’s application was approved by the Alberta Utilities Commission in December 2012.
Construction of the line is scheduled to continue until spring 2015.