raptor on overhead line

White Paper

Overhead Lines and Substations Outages and Protection

Read our white paper written by our Wildlife and Asset Protection expert


The world’s requirement for ever more reliable and cost effective utility operations continues at pace with down time being measured and penalized in minutes and seconds. In the last 20 years, an increasing realization within the industry better understands that the external, generally uncontrolled, effects of wildlife are responsible for a far greater amount of unplanned outages than previously acknowledged. As a result, wildlife and asset protection has become an area of increased interest given that reducing unplanned outages equates to improved efficiency.


Along with our better understanding of the challenges comes an additional pressure from environmental bodies who have the best interests of wildlife at risk of being electrocuted uppermost in their arguments. Historically the area of concern was most often that of the electrical power provider whose reliability was the critical factor but today both points of view require consideration.


This paper addresses the wide range of applications where wildlife interact regularly with our electrical network. We define the problem and illustrate the potential solutions using modern materials and designs to enhance reliability while protecting our wildlife. 


This paper is primarily concerned with the problems, costs and long-term solutions caused by wildlife (birds and animals). It will highlight various other sources where the outage/damage was caused by one of the other mediums but the solution would be the same as if a bird or animal was the prime cause.


Amount of potential fines in $ for not adequately protecting wildlife


The global cost of wildlife induced outages per year


of wildlife induced outages caused by birds