Industry Today

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NECA-IBEW Team Help Tightrope Artist Nik Wallenda Walk into Record Books Again

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On November 2, 2014, daredevil tightrope performer Nik Wallenda walked into the record books again as he made two tightrope walks hundreds of feet above Chicago's downtown. The first walk began at the Marina City West Tower and crossed 450 feet to the Leo Burnett Building, starting from a height of 588 feet and rising to 671 feet, setting the world record for the steepest tightrope walk.

Nik's second feat of the night was crossing from the Marina City West Tower to the East Tower--blindfolded. This walk, at a distance of 94 feet, took place more than 540 feet above the ground and set the world record for the longest blindfolded tightrope walk.

Instrumental to Nik's record-breaking success were NECA contractor O'Connell Electric and IBEW Local 1249, who had all the all-important task of running the tightrope and stabilization wires between buildings. The team has helped Nik before and set up the wires for his celebrated walks across Niagara Falls in 2012 and the Grand Canyon in 2013. Just as each of those walks had their own unique circumstances for engineering and preparation, so did the Chicago walk.

In this edition of "Industry Today," see how the careful planning and perseverance of the NECA-IBEW team set the stage for Nik Wallenda to once again dazzle people around the world in these death-defying tightrope walks.