Beyond the Build


Setting RTUs via Helicopter

Where would we be without helicopters?

This week we used a Sikorksy S-58t helicopter to set 17 RTUs on a new project scheduled for completion next year. It’s amazing how fast the process moved. From pick up to the roof , set time was less than 1 hour.   While we have been using helicopters on this mission for about 15 years, it’s always interesting.


We have found aerial lifts are a fast, efficient and cost-effective way to place equipment.

While this lift came off without a hitch, I can tell you they’re not all this easy.  A few months ago we were lifting off an unpaved subgrade. The subgrade was a fine red dust, which we thought was wet enough. You guessed it: We dusted the adjoining residences.  Not fun. A lot of cleanup.

We learned some good lessons in that process.

Have you used helicopters to set RTUs? Do you have any successes to share, or lessons learned the hard way?


Merrill Stewart Jr.

Merrill Stewart is Founder and CEO of The Stewart/Perry Company, a commercial building contractor based in Birmingham.