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ATC ‘s Taiclet named to Forbes’ 2015 Global 2000 CEO Hall of Fame

American Tower Corp. Chairman and CEO Jim Taiclet has been named to Forbes Magazine’s 2015 Global 2000 CEO Hall of Fame. In assembling its 2015 list, Forbes viewed companies that made the biggest move up its list of the world’s largest companies during the past ten years. Forbes narrowed that group down to 128 companies that had the same CEO for the entire period and …See full article

Safety task force continues to make progress with numerous initiatives

Approximately 50 members of the Wireless Industry Safety Task Force, consisting of top safety and operations executives representing wireless carriers, tower owners, OEM’s, turnkey/construction management firms and NATE, met in Irving, Tex. yesterday to discuss the continued progress of the National Wireless Skills-Based Training Standard This premier skills-based worker standard is being created by the industry’s leading subject matter experts …See full article

Crown Castle severs ‘International’ with its Australian tower unit sale

Houston-based Crown Castle International announced that it is selling its Australian subsidiary, CCAL, to Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets for $1.6 billion, of which they’ll net $1.3 billion after transaction fees and other expenses. “The sale of CCAL allows us to redeploy capital towards our growing small cell networks, which we expect will be accretive to our long-term AFFO and …See full article

Apathy abounds in the tower construction industry regarding potential safety rules

Commentary – Last June, when OSHA floated the possibility that the agency was going to request information that would assist it in determining what additional steps it can take to prevent injuries and fatalities during tower work, some workers, employers, manufacturers and others had reservations about whether the RFI would address important tower safety issues, or be a pre-regulation proposal …See full article

LA’s earthquake-proof tower ordinance is heavily based on an incorrect news article

The Los Angeles City Council on Friday moved to require future cell phone towers to be designed and built with a 1.5 importance factor over the current design code, EIA/TIA-222-G, so that if there ever was a severe earthquake in the city, cell towers would “still be functional.” However, their concern about the current code not being adequate was heavily …See full article

Some wireless industry musicians and singers can easily quit their day job

A traditional scathing barb heard when garage band musicians try to imitate legendary rock stars is: “Don’t quit your day job.” But at last Wednesday’s PCIA – The Wireless Infrastructure Association’s, All-Star Jam Session in Hollywood, Fla., it was obvious that the only things being skewered, were buffet offerings as PCIA members led a rousing session that made the house …See full article

Thousands of revelers pay $30 to watch a Crown Castle tower burn in North Carolina

UPDATE: A spokesperson for Crown Castle International, the owner of a self-supporting tower that caught fire on Saturday when a number of wayward lanterns set some transmission lines on fire during a festival at the Carolina Speedway, said that the extent of the damage is still unknown. Spencer Humiston, the Lantern Fest event director, said that his and Crown Castle’s …See full article

Vertical realtor Crown Castle makes a $1 billion bet on going horizontal

Crown Castle International’s appetite for a fiber rich footprint in major cities across America expanded last week with the acquisition of Sunesys for approximately $1 billion. The wholly owned subsidiary of Quanta Services, Inc. owns or has rights to nearly 10,000 miles of fiber in major metropolitan markets across the U.S. such as Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Chicago, Atlanta, Silicon Valley, …See full article

Industry veteran “Tam” Murray takes the reins of PCIA’s Board of Directors

The Board of Directors of PCIA – The Wireless Infrastructure Association elected new officers during its conference in Hollywood, Fla. last week, selecting Thomas “Tam” Murray, the founder and managing member of Community Wireless Structures, as the new PCIA Board Chairman; Steven Marshall, the Executive Vice President & President of the U.S. Tower Division of American Tower, is the new …See full article

PCIA’s ‘view from the top’ shows a little bottoming out; tall tower crew shortage possible

A common thread throughout yesterday’s PCIA – The Wireless Infrastructure Association’s Hollywood, Fla. conference was that AT&T has pulled back on their builds, Sprint is almost in a holding pattern and T-Mobile is providing a number of opportunities. Verizon, however, is seen as a steady engine that is assisting a slower than expected build in the second quarter. “Verizon continues …See full article

New unraveled electromagnetism theory will not unhinge the tower industry

As PCIA – The Wireless Infrastructure Association kicks off its conference with an infrastructure developers meeting this afternoon in Hollywood, Fla., it’s unlikely that the demise of cell towers will be a hot topic, but media pundits frequently disagree, citing new technology that will replace them with palm size transceivers. One industry editor recently said, the traditional cell tower infrastructure …See full article

NATE Trade show innovator is retiring while companies continue hiring

Included in this week’s Business Briefs roundup, Ken Meador, who kindled the National Association of Tower Erectors’ trade show’s explosive growth, is retiring; Telforce Group has picked up Paul Barone to head its Dallas office; Mark Nellis joins B+T group as its controller; Christopher Felder joins the ranks of Maser Consulting; and Mitch Bateman will be leading obstruction lighting manufacturer Flash …See full article

Subcarrier’s Houston expansion bolsters its ever increasing tower and rooftop count

An industry pioneer in high performance wireless infrastructure services, with a portfolio of some of the country’s best towers in high demand locations, New Jersey-based Subcarrier Communications, announced its Southwest market expansion and the hiring of key executives Dudley Norman and Greg Weger to lead market operations from their new Houston, Tex. office. As demands for wireless connectivity prove to …See full article

Former EHS Sprint chief Slagle joins National Wireless Safety Alliance efforts

The National Wireless Safety Alliance (NWSA) announced today that they have entered into a professional consulting agreement with former Sprint Environmental Health and Safety Executive, Chuck Slagle. Slagle, who recently retired from Sprint after nearly a 38 year career, will be tasked with spearheading several NWSA project initiatives and assist in getting the NWSA national assessment and certification programs to …See full article

As it mulls new tower safety rules, OSHA strongly urges everyone to comment

For the first time in the long history of the wireless construction industry, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is reaching out to all stakeholders, especially tower climbers, to assist it in obtaining information about the causes of employee injuries and fatalities that are occurring among technicians working on communication towers. OSHA is also seeking comments on safe work practices …See full article

Lawsuit win sees contractor’s claim doubled and ownership of 32 towers up for grabs

A court decision requiring the owners of tower consolidator Horizon Towers of Marblehead, Mass. to have 32 of their towers “liquidated and distributed or otherwise used to satisfy the creditors of debtor Eastern Towers, Inc.,” also awarded Timberline Construction of Canton double its owed $264,774 for new site builds due to an unfair or deceptive act. The open market will …See full article

Vertical Bridge, InSite Wireless, Poole, SBA, TI and TSC are in the news

With today’s Business Briefs, iHeartMedia delivers its first set of towers to Vertical Bridge, InSite Wireless jumps to being the 7th largest tower owner in the U.S., the sale of California’s iconic Mt. Wilson towers is near, SBA’s new board member is entrenched in everything telco, Tower Innovations gets a new chief and TSC Tower Specialists takes on Michigan. Vertical Bridge …See full article

Near electrocution of two techs requires a review of safe practices

Update: April 6, 2015 – According to an individual knowledgeable of the incident where two tower technicians were shocked as their lift came in a contact with a power line on April 1, 2015, the techs did not have to jump to the ground as stated by a Beloit, Wisc. fire official, but were lowered to the ground by the …See full article

April Fools’ news caught many off guard including site’s server

April Fools’ Day is the Super Bowl Sunday for internet pranks, and since it’s not common for wireless infrastructure media to join in, Wireless Estimator thought it might be something that could work. It did. In fact, so much so, that after a news bulletin was sent out to over 27,000 subscribers yesterday with bogus, but believable article headlines, the …See full article

American Tower takes AT&T to court and wins a $132 million judgment

American Tower Corporation stood behind a New Jersey construction manager who used a creative approach to comply with an AT&T program manager’s directive on a new monopole cell site’s location, while suffering with hurt feelings, and was awarded $132 million by a Sloatsburg, Tex. jury today. In a statement issued by the Boston-based tower owner following the verdict, the company said, …See full article

From broadband to a blues harp, PCIA Chief splits his time with Broadway

Whereas some vertical realtor executives spend their limited free weekends volunteering at ice cream socials with their employees to put easily detonated protective dye packs in their tenants’ leasehold agreements, PCIA – The Wireless Infrastructure Industry CEO Jonathan Adelstein finds playing to sold-out crowds on Broadway and at Carnegie Hall to be the answer for achieving a perfect work-life balance. The …See full article

Anritsu’s global success tagged to God and one misspelled word in 1844

On May 24, 1844, Samuel Morse dispatched an experimental telegraph message from the U.S. Capitol to Alfred Vail at a railroad station in Baltimore, Md. The message – “What hath God wrought?” – was telegraphed back to the Capitol a moment later by Vail.   Unfortunately, members of Congress witnessing the event began drooling over the opportunity to heavily tax …See full article

Woman’s death linked to her boyfriend’s tower tech profession in Texas

It is not known why 28-year-old Stephanie Gurney of San Angelo, Tex. was on or fell from an SBA Communications 500-foot tower in a rural area 10 miles east of Eden on Saturday at approximately 11:15 a.m., but it is has been established, that her boyfriend, Stephen Butler, who met Stephanie in September of 2014, was a tower technician for …See full article

Goodman Networks lays off 340 as construction managers’ lawsuit advances

Following a layoff of workers in December, Goodman Networks, a family-owned end-to-end wireless network deployment firm, let go an additional 340 employees on March 10, 2015, according to information reviewed by Wireless Estimator. It is not known, however, whether the downsizing was necessary due to a cutback in AT&T’s capex since a company spokesperson said Monday that Goodman Networks will …See full article

Oklahoma tornado takes out a part of broadcasting and defense history

An AM tower array that was designated to be an emergency broadcast station in the event of nuclear war, collapsed yesterday evening in Moore, Okla. after tornadoes ripped through the area, causing what the National Weather Service believes to be the first tornado fatality in 2015 in Sand Springs. Two of the square KOKC Blaw-Knox 327-foot towers constructed in 1947 …See full article

Safety group begins branding its approaching skills-based training efforts

The National Wireless Safety Alliance (NWSA) unveiled the organization’s official logo during a presentation last week at the 2015 International Wireless Communications Expo in Las Vegas, Nev. The NWSA is a non-profit assessment and certification organization that is being created to serve as the governance entity of the Wireless Industry Safety Task Force’s National Wireless Skills-Based Training Standard. The mission …See full article

200-plus tower deal floats Vertical Bridge to 5th largest U.S. tower owner

CiG Wireless Corp., a leading owner and operator of wireless communications infrastructure in the U.S. has announced the signing of an agreement to be acquired by an affiliate of Vertical Bridge Holdings, LLC, a wireless communication towers company. Vertical Bridge is acquiring the company’s tower assets, including a geographically diverse group of more than 200 tower sites, in a transaction …See full article

New tower standard expected in 2016, ANSI/TIA-322 participation invited

Following ANSI/TIA-222-G’s introduction in 2006, and after four addenda, the national structural standard for communications and small wind turbine support structures will see Revision H being introduced next year, according to a TR-14 Engineering Committee report. Changes being assessed in Rev H The committee is reviewing issues for Revision H which is expected to be completed by Spring 2016. Areas …See full article

With low visual impact, RFS has antennas hiding in plain sight

Radio Frequency Systems, a global wireless and broadcast infrastructure specialist, has announced its new AllClear transparent antenna product line. It is necessary to limit the visual impact of antennas as much as possible to reduce the difficulty of acquiring new sites and renew existing leases. The AllClear product line was specifically developed to meet this need for RFS customers worldwide …See full article

Sabre acquires long-established FWT to expand its structures sector

Sabre Industries, Inc. and FWT, LLC have announced that they have completed a strategic business combination. Based in Alvarado, Tex., Sabre is a leading producer of highly engineered structures used for electricity transmission and distribution and wireless telecommunication, offering a complete range of engineered towers, poles, and related services. FWT is a Fort Worth, Tex.-based manufacturer of steel structures for …See full article

AT&T kayos its 40,000 small cell build-out in half

AT&T’s 40,000 small cell deployments projected to be completed by the end of 2015 took a sharp cut in the carrier’s network plans since its goal may now be 20,000, about half the original number. The company said its March 2014 acquisition of Leap Wireless required it to reconsider those plans. “Small cells remain a key part of our advanced …See full article

Climbing higher for techs will not be possible in Google’s grand plan

Although Google is currently developing wireless service plans that will prohibit tower technicians from climbing to maintain the transceivers – because they’ll be at an elevation between 23,000 and 65,000 feet in the stratosphere – this week’s announcement that the company intends to offer MVNO wireless connectivity to customers in the U.S. will also exclude techs from working on Google-owned …See full article

NATE unveils epic 20th anniversary commemorative video

As part of the National Association of Tower Erectors’ 20th Anniversary Celebration festivities, the Association has unveiled a commemorative video highlighting NATE’s 20 years in the industry. The video includes exclusive interviews with NATE’s original founding fathers, historical photos of communications structures and breathtaking aerial views of tower technicians working on communications towers. It’s not surprising to find unsafe climbing …See full article

Competitive spirit can be cutthroat in leasehold ground wars of towercos

Although the nation’s major tower owners present a public face of spirited friendly competition and collective initiatives to ensure worker safety, when it comes to protecting their interests it can be a no holds barred battle between them to keep their most valuable assets, their long-term leases. One clash got so nasty that the counter-complainant wanted a leasehold aggregator’s executives …See full article

TSC Tower Specialists launches new EF&I division

TSC Tower Specialists has announced the expansion of their service offerings to include a new engineer, furnish and install division to complement their turnkey wireless services. TSC, founded in 2006, can now offer their clients quicker closeouts, ease of budgets, purchase and change orders and superior quality. With a team of over 40 cross-trained, certified engineers, the team can eliminate additional …See full article

Founding members, exhibitors honored at NATE UNITE 2015

At the National Association of Tower Erectors’ annual convention in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. last week the organization recognized its 20-year founding members and exhibitors during the event’s most successful show which saw a record crowd of almost 1,700 attendees. Pictured at right, NATE Chairwoman Pat Cipov recognizes the trade group’s first single sheet newsletter, being held by Paul Light, …See full article

Sarah Palin’s topics ran from ‘wimps’ to net neutrality at NATE confab

Former Governor of Alaska and Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s keynote speech at NATE UNITE 2015 on Wednesday in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. provided a folksy and entertaining 36-minute reprieve from industry-related discussions that have highlighted what is being identified as the organization’s largest and most energized conference in the trade group’s 20-year history. As expected, Palin lampooned President Obama …See full article

Oil painting brings in $10,000 for Tower Family Foundation at NATE auction

An original oil painting by award-winning artist Joanne Shellan from Seattle, WA, was auctioned off last night in spirited bidding that topped out at $10,000 at the Tower Family Foundation auction at NATE UNITE 2015 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The painting, entitled “Almost Home,” depicts a silhouetted tower climber descending the last section of a tower as the sun sets …See full article

Doty, Reski honored at NATE’s largest conference in 20 years

The National Association of Tower Erectors today honored Don Doty, Vice President of Operations at Velocitel, Inc. in Cedar Hill, Tex. and Kevin Reski, President of Great Plains Towers in West Fargo, N.D., during the Founding Member Luncheon at NATE UNITE 2015 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The conference, which began yesterday, has topped attendance records for the premiere event …See full article

NWSA is final component for issuance of national training certifications

Although it might be eight to 12 months or more before tower techs or foremen will be able to proudly show their training and skill-set certification card, an announcement today by the leadership of the Wireless Industry Safety Task Force identified that certification in the future will be a reality and will enhance tower safety, reduce workplace risk, improve quality, …See full article

Former Verizon executive Mitrovich named PCIA Vice President

Jonathan Adelstein, President and CEO of PCIA – The Wireless Infrastructure Association announced that former Verizon executive Marissa Mitrovich will join the association as Vice President of Program Development. In this newly-created role, Mitrovich will lead PCIA’s new business activities and project initiatives, including training and education. “We are so fortunate to land an executive of Marissa’s caliber to direct …See full article

Safety climb system failure seriously injures tower tech in 50-foot fall

A Kentucky tower climber who had been in an induced coma for the past 10 days had additional surgery yesterday, and this morning for the first time was able to talk, but he is unable to remember his traumatic fall off of an Ohio tower that required him to be airlifted to St. Elizabeth Hospital in Youngstown to be treated for …See full article

Velocitel picks up FDH to expand its national footprint

Velocitel, Inc., a wireless network services company, has acquired the assets of FDH, an engineering and construction company. “This acquisition expands the footprint of Velocitel into new areas that are part of our growth strategy. FDH is one of the most respected engineering companies in the field, with a deep breadth of knowledge in civil and water, geotechnical, and structural …See full article

Over 29,000 tower climbers identified in extensive wireless workforce survey

According to a comprehensive study released today by identifying how many wireless technicians routinely work on elevated structures in the course of their employment, the number of tower climbers has dramatically increased to over 29,000 workers, almost triple from the last available analysis undertaken in 2006 by Wireless Estimator which put the total of tower technicians at approximately 9,800. …See full article

Crown is exploring sale of its Australian towers and settling in the US

Crown Castle International Corp. announced today that it plans to explore the potential sale of its Australian subsidiary (CCAL). “In light of recent unsolicited offers we have received for our interest in CCAL, we have determined that fully exploring the options available to us will ensure the best long-term results for our shareholders,” stated W. Ben Moreland, Crown Castle’s President …See full article

Sarah Palin will certainly not liken climbers to caribou at NATE keynote

When former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin speaks before trade groups she typically tailors part of her presentation to industry-specific concerns, and most likely will touch upon tower climber safety when she talks at the industry’s largest wireless infrastructure conference for contractors and suppliers on Feb. 25, 2015 at NATE UNITE 2015 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. There is also a possibility …See full article

OSHA cites wireless contractor with $114,800 fine following painter’s death

The U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration has issued a $114,800 fine for an Indiana wireless contractor, which it charges did not provide adequate protection for a 49-year-old worker who fell about 90 feet to his death while painting a communication tower on August 10, 2014. Thomas Lucas of Toledo, Ill. fell 80 to 90 feet while painting a communications …See full article

February 13 is the last day to register online for NATE UNITE 2015

Online registration for the National Association of Tower Erectors conference, NATE UNITE 2015, ends tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 13, 2015. But if you can’t register today and suffer from Paraskevidekatriaphobics – those afflicted with a morbid, irrational fear of Friday the 13th – don’t be alarmed, you can register on site for what could very well be the largest attended conference in …See full article

ATC leads slightly over Crown with their $5 billion 11,324 Verizon tower deal

American Tower Corporation today announced that it has been the successful suitor in acquiring the rights to approximately 11,324 wireless communications towers and purchase approximately 165 additional towers from Verizon Communications, Inc. for $5.056 billion. Under the agreement, American Tower will have the exclusive right to lease and operate the Verizon towers for a weighted average term of approximately 28 …See full article

“Mercedes” harness hits the market with Connect-It Wireless as its provider

Unless you’ve hung in a harness for hours, you’ll never appreciate how the key component of a personal fall arrest system can add discomfort to an already challenging job. However, FallTech believes that you deserve the most comfort while working aloft without compromising on versatility and rugged strength, and has introduced its FlowTech Tower Climber®, which is quickly being tagged by …See full article