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Over the next few months, you may see an unusual sight when driving along Oak Creek Canyon.

Arizona Public Services is in the process of replacing power poles within the canyon and is expected to do so through the end of January with working having begun in September.

Many will be replaced by using helicopters that will carry the poles to locations not easily accessible by vehicle.

“We will avoid scheduling work during major holidays,” APS spokeswoman Annie DeGraw said.

“All activities will take place during daylight hours, Monday through Saturday. We will make every effort to keep disruptions to a minimum, especially when working near residential areas.”

The work will include the removal and replacement of 94 wood poles in Oak Creek Canyon, beginning north of Sedona along State Route 89A and proceeding north approximately 13 miles, she said.

“We do not expect any extended power outages due to this construction,” DeGraw said. “However, once the new poles are installed, we will need to interrupt service for a short time in order to safely connect the new equipment.

Customers will be notified in advance of any required planned outages.” This project is part of APS’s ongoing effort to ensure reliable electric service for our customers, she said.

APS does regular inspections of its grid and determines when poles need to be replaced.

“Poles are replaced on an as-needed basis,” she said. “APS performs regular inspection of all poles in our service territory and replaces them when they are damaged or aged.

We sometimes will go in to replace wooden poles with steel poles as part of our effort to harden the grid.”

Ron Eland can be reached at 282-7795, ext. 122 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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