Arizona Public Service Company

County Line - Bunyan Overhead Rebuild Project

The Arizona Public Service Company (APS) County Line – Bunyan Overhead Rebuild Project involved replacing 17 miles of 69kV transmission line with 12kV underbuild in an area outside of Gila Bend, Arizona. The scope included framing and setting new poles; stringing, sagging, and clipping new conductor; and removing the old 69kV/12kV line. Approximately 10 miles of this line were constructed out-of-lead with the remaining portion constructed in-lead. The in-lead sections required 69kV outages and the entire line required significant coordination with APS and customers.

Wilson’s crew faced significant challenges while completing this project. First, the weather in this region is particularly unforgiving, with summer temperatures reaching between 110 and 120 degrees. Second, the diverse interests of different landowners in the project area posed challenges. One section of the project ran through Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land that acted as a natural wash for rain runoff. To avoid disturbing the flow of rainwater in this area, Wilson’s crew took special care to minimally impact the land. When BLM reviewed the land after Wilson’s crew had left, they were thrilled with Wilson’s respectful treatment of the project area.

Another portion of the project was located around a petroglyph site. Petroglyphs are centuries-old rock drawings made by Native Americans, and they hold special significance for tribes today. One pole that Wilson needed to remove was located near numerous petroglyphs, and a local tribe expressed concern that Wilson’s activities would disturb the site. Because of this, Wilson took special care to avoid damages. Using three bucket trucks outside of this area, the crew removed the existing wire with ropes so that it would not touch the ground. Then, the crew cut the pole into sections, removing each section as it came off the top. In the end, the pole was removed with minimal impact to the site. All parties were pleased with the outcome.