Chillicothe Municipal Utilities’ electric department crew is nearing the halfway point of changing out all of the city’s transmission poles, with the latest pole having been removed from a shallow pond in the northwest part of the city. Linemen used a boat on Wednesday to reach a pole located north of Polk Street and west of Jansen Street. The pole had been in place since around the 1960s. About 25 years ago, a shallow pond was dug around the pole. This week, crews removed the power lines from that pole, relocated them on to other poles and began cutting down the pole a few feet at a time. CMU will return at a later date to hook a cable onto the remaining portion of the pole and remove it. Apprentice lineman Tommy Wombwell and lineman Jeremy Hicks climbed the pole and were assisted by lead lineman Reece Crawford. Removing the pole is part of a ongoing transmission line replacement program involving the changing out of approximately 286 transmission poles over the course of eight to 10 years. Using a boat to reach a pole is an “example of CMU crews doing their job,” said Matt Hopper, electric department superintendent. Some of the transmission poles date back to 1952. By the end of this year, CMU will have replaced about half of the city’s poles. This includes all of the poles located between CMU’s energy center on Water Works Road north to Chillicothe Correctional Center. Hopper estimates the entire pole replacement project to be completed within the next four of five years. Poles range in height from 50 to 90 feet. Other cities often contract with a private company to provide the pole replacement services; however, CMU’s crews are properly trained and equipped to do the work which results in a savings to the city, Hopper said.