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Enhancing Reliability While Protecting Our Environment

At Delmarva Power, we are working to improve electric service reliability while protecting the environment. One major project involves the completion of a 90-mile, 230,000-volt transmission line along the Delmarva Peninsula, from Red Lion to Millsboro, Del. The line is designed to transport enough electricity to keep the lights on for about 300,000 customers.

A unique skycrane helicopter was used in the recent construction of a Delmarva Power transmission line along the Delmarva Peninsula. The helicopter enabled the utility to minimize the new line’s environmental impact on surrounding wetlands.

During the construction process, Delmarva Power took innovative steps to care for the environment. Since the line crosses approximately 336 acres of environmentally sensitive wetlands, more than 300 utility poles were installed using non-traditional methods to avoid disturbing the soil.

For example, a hollow, steel caisson was flown to each wetland site and vibrated into the ground to minimize impact on wetland vegetation and indigenous habitat. A caisson is a watertight structure used in underwater construction. A unique, sky-crane helicopter then slipped the 85-foot-long pole inside the caisson. Construction crews on the ground then tightened bolts to temporarily secure the pole in the caisson before it was grouted in place.

“This is a perfect example of Delmarva Power’s efforts to invest in electric service reliability while at the same time protecting the environment,” said Gary Stockbridge, President, Delmarva Power Region.