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MECO to conduct aerial line inspections

Maui Electric Co. will use drones to conduct routine aerial power line inspections from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Nov. 21 and 22 in the West Maui area, weather permitting.

The drones, or unmanned aircraft systems, are being used as a cost effective measure when accessing remote areas or challenging terrains, for increased employee safety, and to reduce the company’s carbon footprint, MECO said in a news release Thursday.

The company has started to use drones for a variety of inspections, most recently in assessing power lines damaged in recent wildfires on the island.

MECO said its UAS program is in full compliance with all Federal Aviation Administration rules and has developed safety, training, operating and privacy procedures to make sure the drones are flown with safety for the public and crews in mind.