American Transmission Co. projects

Project website for a Wisconsin-based company that owns and operates the high-voltage electric transmission system that powers communities in portions of the Upper Midwest.

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Helicopter, air saw to be used for tree trimming

Ground access to power line corridor presents difficulties

DE PERE,Wis.–  A helicopter and heavy-duty air saw will be used to trim trees along a 23-mile transmission line corridor between substations in Houghton and Elm River Township in Houghton County beginning Aug. 15.

“The remote nature of the transmission line corridor makes it very difficult to access with ground crews,” says Janssen Baij, maintenance engineer for American Transmission Co. in Kingsford. “The helicopter and air saw can perform trimming in a few hours; a  ground-based crew might take several days to accomplish the same amount of work in difficult terrain.”

ATC has contracted with Aerial Solutions, Inc., based in Tabor City, N.C., to perform the work. The company uses McDonnell Douglas helicopters equipped with a 24-horsepower saw with multiple rotary blades suspended on a 90-foot vertical boom.

Managing the growth of trees and other vegetation is key to helping ensure public safety and electric system reliability. ATC performs routine vegetation management on its 9,440 miles of transmission lines in five-year cycles.

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ATC is a Wisconsin-based company that moves energy along the regional electric grid in parts of Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota and Illinois, serving more than 5 million electric consumers. We are experts at what we do: planning, maintaining, operating and protecting the grid. As the electric industry moves toward renewable generation sources, we are transforming our system to continue delivering energy reliably and safely. We proudly support STEM education programs that empower youth with the skills needed to succeed in tomorrow’s energy workforce. For more information, visit and follow us on LinkedIn and X (Twitter).