Western Area Power Administration (WAPA) requests encroachment permission to perform inspections of existing utility power poles and a meter pole in the Department of Water Resources right of way. If the poles pass these inspections, they will be treated to protect against decay.
The following work will be done at each of the poles. To inspect the poles, WAPA will first check them by sight for obvious damage. Then, a hammer will be used to strike the pole to inspect for decay by sound. If decay is suspected, but not detected by sight or by sound, 5/16-inch or 3/8-inch diameter holes will be drilled into the pole to inspect for decay. If the pole appears to be in acceptable condition, a 3-foot-long by 3-foot-wide by 2-foot-deep excavation will then be made to expose the pole’s base for a belowground inspection. The belowground inspection involves using hand tools to inspect the surface of the exposed portion of the pole for damage and drilling three 13/16-inch diameter holes into the exposed section of the pole to check for internal decay.
If the pole is still determined to be in acceptable condition, it will be treated to protect against decay. This treatment will involve applying a fumigant and a preservative chemical. The fumigant will be inserted into all drill holes that were made during the inspections, and the drill holes will be closed with a plastic plug. If treatable internal decay was detected during the inspections, one 13/16-inch diameter hole will be drilled into the pole above the internal decay pocket and another will be drilled into the pole below the internal decay pocket. Then, those drill holes will be filled with fumigant and closed with plastic plugs. All fumigants will be applied as specified by the manufacturer’s guidelines. To apply the preservative chemical, the pole will first be cleaned from 24 inches below ground line to three inches above ground line. Then, the preservative will be brushed onto the cleaned portions of the pole and a polyethylene-backed kraft paper wrapping will be applied over the chemical to prevent it from leaching into the soils. Alternatively, a treated pole bandage may be applied to the cleaned pole instead of applying preservative and wrapping. These chemicals and wrappings will be applied as specified by the manufacturer’s guidelines.
Following treatment, the excavated area at each pole will be backfilled and the pole will be marked with a noncorrosive metal tag.