Potential hazard warning: Spacer damper failure
May 6, 2016
As part of our ongoing commitment to safety, AltaLink will be increasing the frequency of inspections along a number of our transmission lines to monitor the condition of a piece of equipment called a spacer damper.
A certain type of spacer damper has failed on AltaLink transmission lines. Please see the map for a detailed overview of which lines contain spacer dampers that will require increased inspections.
A spacer damper connects wires at intervals between transmission towers to reduce movement and prevent the wires from contacting and damaging each other. Spacer dampers are attached to the wires with clamps and secured by bolts. The picture below is an example of a spacer damper installed on a transmission line.
Clamp bolts on failed spacer dampers did not remain secure and the clamp released from the wire, causing a portion of the spacer damper to fall to the ground. The picture below is an example of a spacer damper in a failed condition.
There is a possibility that a spacer damper, or parts of a spacer damper, could fall to the ground from the overhead transmission wires. AltaLink asks that you avoid the area below our transmission lines. If you must be in an area below the lines, please avoid being directly under a spacer damper and cross close to the tower.
If you believe you have found pieces of spacer dampers on the ground, or notice a spacer damper that appears to be failed, please contact AltaLink at 1-877-380-0303 or firstname.lastname@example.org and AltaLink will conduct further inspection and investigation.
Please do not pick up or move the pieces because seeing them in their original location will allow AltaLink to more easily identify the line section from which the spacer damper fell.
AltaLink will be inspecting spacer dampers on an ongoing basis and will address any issues as required.
Inspection activities may include low-level helicopter flight inspections, ground level inspections and crews accessing the line from service trucks. AltaLink will contact landowners in advance if we need to access the land as part of the inspection activities.
AltaLink apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and appreciates your help in letting us know if you see anything unusual regarding the spacer dampers. Thank you for your cooperation in advance as we work to maintain the safety of the transmission system.