Whanganui Lidar and Pole Top Photography

Low flying helicopter to inspect power poles in your area

Low flying helicopters will be used to take photographs of all power poles in the rural Whanganui area. The work is being carried out in two stages with stage one: 25 March – 12 April and stage two: 8 April – 30 April.

In the event of bad weather the work will be rescheduled.

If you have any concerns or questions please email us on customerservices@powerco.co.nz

Flight Area



Why are we doing this work?

Powerco owns the lines in the area and needs to collect data about the condition of its poles and assets. This is a trial using poletop photography and Lidar (light detection and ranging) to identify vegetation and any possible disruption issues.

What are we doing?

Low flying helicopters will be used to take high resolution photographs of all power poles in the rural Whanganui area. The photos are then reviewed to assess the quality of the poles, crossarms and wires across the network.

The technology then enables Powerco to create a 3Ddigital twin of the network, that can not only be used to assess the current state and make upgrades as needed, but it will assist planning for the future.

Who is carrying out this work on our behalf?

The vendor selected to carry out this trial is Fugro BTW Limited. Local pilots will be contracted to do the work.

When & where:


This work is being conducted in the rural Whanganui area (see map)

Low flying helicopters will be used to capture the poletop photography.

The network has been split in two areas, North: Rangiwaea & South: Parikino.

The estimated survey dates are:

Stage one: 25 March – 12 April 2019

Stage two: 8 -30 April 2019

In the event of bad weather, the work may be rescheduled.

For those that are requiring more information please visit: https://www.powerco.co.nz/ptproject Or email: customerservices@powerco.co.nz

Why not use drones?

Drones that are currently on the commercial market on are not big enough to support the equipment required to carry out the type of work we are conducting.

A drone lacks the ability to provide us with the quality and range of photographs we require to assess our assets.

Drones can only last a short period in the air and have a short range before they need to be charged. It would require a human to travel with it on the ground across the network, which would not be efficient. A helicopter can run for several hours and cover a lot more distance.

Last Updated: 14 May 2020 - 10:55:41