Power Lines North of SAFB Will be Moved

All day long, planes taking off and landing at Sheppard Air Force Base fly over the power lines just north of the base along Bailey Road.

With just a few hundred feet of clearance, experts feel that's just too close for comfort.

Lt. Col. Tab Brinkman is a pilot at Sheppard, and worked with the committee to get the lines moved.

"Whether we're landing to the south, or taking off to the north, our aircraft cross these power lines roughly 600 times per day," said Brinkman, "and with roughly 80% of aircraft incidents occurring either on take-off or landing, that's our most dangerous time."

So when Oncor said they would be constructing new transmission lines to bring power from the Panhandle down to the Metroplex, both the City of Wichita Falls and SAFB saw an opportunity to move the existing lines back.

Also, new safety features will be added.

"Some of the towers that run along the east side will be equipped now with lights, anti-collision lights," said Tom Whaylen, the President of the Sheppard Military Affairs Committee.

By moving the power lines, many officials said flying and landing planes will become safer.

Also Tom Whaylen said that could increase the Department of Defense's value on SAFB.

"If there were to be some other flying mission coming in here," said Whaylen, "that line might prohibit consideration of a flying mission because it's way too close for whatever the approach or departure paths of some other aircraft might be."

A possible plan for the future, taking flight today.

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