Line crews to test new Linetrac dozer on difficult access jobs

As in most jobs, it is important to have the proper tools to complete the task safely and efficiently. That is the idea behind Tri-State’s plan to lease a line maintenance machine — the Linetrac 830G — that combines a digger/derrick truck and a man lift vehicle on a bulldozer platform.

Linetrac_01

The Linetrac 830G will be a welcome addition to Tri-State’s transmission maintenance equipment fleet.

This unique, multi-task machine is well suited to assist crews in tackling a list of necessary maintenance projects that are located in difficult access and environmentally sensitive areas of the service territory.

Tri-State’s board of directors authorized the one-year lease of the Linetrac during the Dec. 3-4 board meeting held in Westminster. Greg Britton, acting senior manager of transmission maintenance, provided a detailed presentation on this machine at the Dec. 3 engineering and operations board committee meeting.

Like Tri-State’s snowcats, the Linetrac has the capability to reach difficult access areas during the wintertime.

Like Tri-State’s snowcats, the Linetrac has the capability to reach difficult access areas during the wintertime.

“Increasing environmental sensitivities in our right-of-way areas have prompted us to seek ways to reduce our footprint on the land and this machine allows us winter access to some of our mountain and sand hill areas in Nebraska where we have identified necessary maintenance upgrades on some of our older lines,” said Joel Bladow, senior vice president of transmission.

The Linetrac is equipped with 30-inch steel tracks for maneuverability in snow and steep terrain, an 80-foot crane, two-man bucket attachment, a 20,000-pound capacity electric winch and an auger attachment. It has the capability to set poles up to 110 feet in length and the boom can be operated on sloping terrain, rather than a level pad needed for most boom trucks.

Because this machine is unique to Tri-State’s maintenance equipment fleet, the association has elected to test its performance for a year through a lease option before considering permanently adding it to the maintenance fleet. The new machine will be shared among crews throughout the Tri-State system.

The Linetrac will be deployed initially to Colorado’s Western Slope, focusing on projects in the Durango, Montrose and Craig regions. After that, it will move to western Nebraska for extensive work on lines in the Hyannis and Ogallala areas.

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