Very interesting. And echoes of Enron still, too. I wondered about the insulation on new lines wearing, after seeing the metal hooks wear. If they are replacing everything to account for the added weight, I guess they have plans for those fasteners, but he did not say.
They have been replacing lines and towers here (using helicopters quite a bit too). Silly question--why do they leave the new metal structures with fine rust all over?
Firearms can be blued, blacked, or browned. This is a very fine rust. On copper we would call it a patina. They do this rusting process for the same reason they galvanize metal. It actually protects the metal. It is a low alloy steel and they call it weathered steel. They use it outside urban areas where they still use galvanized for appearance sake since other poles in town are typically galvanized.