Helicopters flying low through Three Rivers this week and perhaps next week are likely no cause for alarm. Southern California Edison, the utility company which supplies the town with electricity, is using the aircraft to perform maintenance duties, getting new materials into rugged areas and flying old materials out.
Several flumes constructed in Kaweah Country divert river water for the generation of electricity, whence it is returned to the river at lower elevations. These flumes are necessarily built along the contours of the hillsides and are largely inaccessible by road. When originally constructed the materials were carried by beasts of burden. As the flumes were modernized, rotor aircraft was utilized to more efficiently carry supplies and to quickly convey flume workers.