Across the world, cellular communication is becoming the best, most efficient method for people to contact one another other. This has required cell phone companies to have their towers operating at peak efficiency and reliability. As a result, preventative maintenance and upkeep must be done on a regular basis and performed quickly enough in order to keep the tower functioning at its maximum capacity. Drones are a premier option, replacing roped cell tower climbers and delivering high quality information in a safe and timely manner.
Drones have become a quick, safe and overall beneficial option for cell tower inspections. In 2013, there were 13 cell-tower related fatalities in the United States. Helping to reduce this number is something that drones are fully capable of doing.
From an efficiency standpoint, drones are an extremely valuable tool to inspect environmental issues, more specifically bird nesting. Drones can determine where there are active bird nests on the tower, which makes monitoring activity much simpler.
On top of environmental issues, drones can also analyze structural issues on the tower where climbers are looking to clamp on to in order to perform maintenance. These clamp locations may not be entirely safe to utilize, and having this information before climbing can further reduce safety hazards and ultimately fatalities.
Finally, drones have a unique ability to inspect towers regardless of the type of cell tower. Whether the cellular antennas are on top of a water tower, or a simple guyed tower, drones can inspect the structure of the 100+ foot tower in less than an hour’s time. The shorter the tower, the less the inspection time. This ‘hours’ worth of inspection is well worth the money and more importantly, the lives saved.