Oklahoma Temporary Tower Rule Ready


Oklahoma is expected to adopt emergency rules that will require wind farm prospectors to make the temporary towers they use to measure wind energy potential more visible to pilots. The so-called METs (meteorological evaluation towers) are usually a few inches shy of 200 feet tall, the height at which the FAA starts regulating tower marking. The state is also planning to require those putting up the towers, which can go up within a day, to notify the state Aeronautics Commission of the exact location of the tower for inclusion on a database that it will be required to maintain. The bill that will result in the rules was authored by Sen. Charles Wyrick and Rep. Don Armes with a goal of reducing hazards to low-flying aircraft, particularly crop-dusters and medevacs.

“Anytime that we have the opportunity to minimize the risk of serious injury or death among the flying public, we should take the necessary actions to do that,” said Vic Bird, director of the Aeronautics Commission. “These rules will provide pilots such as crop-dusters and emergency medical personnel with an added layer of safety.”Under the rules, the towers will have to be painted with alternating bands of orange and white and the guy wires will have to have safety sleeves and marker balls. The NTSB has asked every state to enact similar rules.