Des Moines, Iowa — MidAmerican Energy company is moving to battery power in some of its trucks that are used to fix power lines. MidAmerican energy is adding some new trucks that use battery power to raise and lower workers in the boom to work on overhead power lines. Fleet manager, Brian Knights, says current trucks have to keep their engines running and burn fuel to power the hydraulic booms
Knights says the on-board batteries take over when the truck’s engine is shut off.
He says saving fuel is one of the benefits of the electric system, as it also cuts down on vehicle emissions, reduces noise from the running motor, and cuts down on maintenance costs as the trucks engine is running fewer hours. Knights says the new green trucks offer flexibility depending on the conditions they are used in.
Knights says the batteries are charged while the truck is moving between job sites or it can be plugged in overnight. Knights says the new trucks cost more in the beginning.
He says most trucks run for 10 to 12 years before they are replaced. Knights says they will put eight of the trucks into service before the end of this year, and they eventually plan to replace all 100 of these types of trucks with the green models. He says the cost of the trucks is proprietary information they can’t release.