Laser Technology and its line of laser rangefinders such as the rugged, compact, waterproof TruPulse® 360R and 200X have quickly become an integral part of Professional Measurement’s arsenal worldwide. There’s an old adage that’s been passed from one generation to the next, and honestly I don’t have an idea as to its origin, but I’m certain your father said it many times. “Measure twice, cut once…” is how I remember it. My take on this is that preparation and double checking will prevent having to do it over or even averting catastrophe!
Most electric utilities have an S.O.P. manual in their archives that mandates each customer’s current information regarding pole spacing, line heights and tensions; as well a detailed GIS map indicating positions and features is available upon request. Right? Newark’s PSEG says they do.
Well someone failed to mention this to a driver working for ABF Freight while driving in a residential area apparently lost. An online news feature from News 12 New Jersey documented a prime example of how this happens. Obviously unaware of the height of his trailer versus the sagging power lines, the driver entangled the trailer with the power lines knocking down poles and cutting electricity to the surrounding area! I read about something like this every week!
PSEG bemoaned the fact it would take a full-day to repair the damage but highly suspect ABF New Jersey will get the bill. Nobody was hurt and as far as damage goes it’s probably minor comparatively speaking. That said though, it all could have easily been prevented.
To know the height of his trailer and height of the power lines, use the TruPulse 360 vertical distance mode & known instrument height to measure the heights, especially on level ground. To know the length & height of the trailer, use the missing line routine in the TruPulse 360 laser rangefinder. Then one can measure the height to the power lines with the build-in height routine. This 3 shot routine takes less than 15 seconds and will let you know immediately if you will clear the lines or not!
Having a TruPulse 360 at your disposal (fits easily into a vest pocket) eliminates rough estimates or just plain guessing. Not having this instant verification essentially is rolling the dice. The cost of repairing the downed lines and poles will run into the thousands. The price of a TruPulse 360 is cost effective insurance and if I may use an old cliché, “An ounce of prevention is worth is a pound of cure.”
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