Holy Cross not taking eagle’s electrocution lightly
We at Holy Cross Energy were saddened recently by the death of a bald eagle when it contacted one of our overhead power lines crossing the Roaring Fork River. This unfortunate accident is not being taken lightly.
Since 1999 it has been Holy Cross’ policy to reduce or eliminate electrocution risks to raptors, wildlife and domestic animals that could possibly come into contact with our energized power lines and equipment.
To date, Holy Cross has invested more than $300,000 to install protective devices on existing power lines and equipment. All new and rebuilt overhead facilities have been and will continue to be designed and constructed consistent with our policy. These efforts have significantly reduced consumer service outage hours attributable to animals and birds from 9,353 hours in 1999 to 523 hours in 2001.
We have consulted with a highly regarded Rocky Mountain area raptor expert concerning this accident and how to reduce the risk to eagles and other raptors. We have concluded that installing wire-marking devices called “bird flight diverters” is appropriate for this river crossing.
These devices have been ordered and will be installed as soon as they arrive. Installation of these devices on the wires will require a power outage for all consumers served by the power line. These consumers will be notified of the outage as far in advance as possible.
In addition, Holy Cross has taken an inventory of all river crossings within our service area. Each crossing will be evaluated and appropriate actions will be taken.
Richard D. Brinkley
Holy Cross Energy
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