A first-of-its-kind bucket truck joined United Power’s fleet.
The innovative, hybrid model bucket truck uses battery power to raise and lower the bucket as well as the bucket jib. It was debuted in September by the Brighton-based electric cooperative at the 2021 Utility Expo in Louisville, Kentucky.
The electric boom and jib (a small crane attached to the bucket, allowing line crews to lift heavy materials up to bucket height) provide a cleaner, quieter idle time. Not only does this save diesel fuel and reduce emissions, it will improve safety conditions for line crews, according to United Power Fleet Manager Bill Hottell. He said in a recent press release that it’s a safer option than a traditional truck because the bucket crew will have an easier time communicating with the ground crew without having to compete with the noise of an idling diesel engine.
The hybrid truck is assigned to the Carbon Valley Service Center to respond to outages on the west side of United Power’s service territory. People in the community can identify this new truck as the hybrid model because it was branded with green lightning graphics on the side.