Altec recently delivered a newly purchased 50-foot AN650 aerial device to one of the most challenging locations the service team has come up against — the Alaskan North Slope’s most scenic village, Anaktuvuk Pass.
The Anaktuvuk Pass, a village of about 400 people, is located on a historic caribou migration route. In the Arctic Circle, traveling becomes difficult in late summer/early fall due to thick fog, inconsistent weather patterns and for the Anaktuvuk Pass villagers, the caribou. Between the months of August and September, thousands of caribou make their way through the pass.
In order to ship the aerial device, the boom, front tires, and platform ladder had to be removed. Altec Service team members, Ron Steele and Shawn Hedleston, stepped up to the challenge from Account Manager Nick Zevenbergen to assist with the delivery.
The team began the adventure in Anchorage at the service bay of Chugach Electric, another Altec customer, who graciously allowed the use of a service bay and some equipment to remove the boom. After measuring the cargo plane dimensions, the group realized they would need to make further alterations before it would fit. To make it work, they had to also remove the platform ladder and the front tires.
Once the group had the truck packed and ready for takeoff, they took a small prop plane the extra 60 miles to Anaktuvuk Pass to await the truck’s arrival. After a two-day weather delay, the cargo plane in Anchorage departed for its final destination — Anaktuvuk Pass. The team stayed in a modular home until the cargo plane arrived.
“Thanks to the dedication of the service team, the North Slope Borough received the equipment they need to keep their village connected,” said Zevenbergen.
This is the third AN650 the North Slope Borough has purchased this year for overhead distribution work throughout the village. With the first arriving on a barge, the second delivered on a track unit called a rolligon and the third being taken apart and flown in on a cargo plane, each delivery was more unique and challenging than the last, according to Altec.