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What To Do When a Tree Is Close to a Power Line

Trees can add both aesthetic and property value to our homes. They give us something to nurture and help grow. But when they start to grow close to power lines, it could be a sign it’s time for them to go.

Mr. Tree understands the time and expense you’ve taken to care for your trees over the years. If there’s any way to salvage the tree and keep it from posing a threat to your family’s safety, we will make every effort to do so.

But if a tree becomes a hazard, you must be cautious and take the appropriate steps. One of the most dangerous situations we come across in our line of work is trees that have grown too close to a power line. Here’s what to do if this situation applies to you.

Take Precautions

The first thing you should do is make sure you and everyone on your property stays clear of the tree in question, including your pets. If the tree is touching the power line or simply close to the power line, it could already be energized. This means you should make sure the situation is remedied as soon as possible.

Never attempt to trim a tree that’s too close to a power line on your own. This is not a do-it-yourself type of situation. You could be putting your life and the lives of others at risk. Instead, contact professionals who are experienced in handling this type of scenario. If the tree has already fallen on a power line, then immediately contact 911.

mr-tree-what-to-do-when-a-tree-is-close-to-a-power-lineNotify Your Utility Company

If a tree is close to a power line, then you should notify your utility company right away. Since trees close to power lines could cause power outages, it’s a good idea to put your utility company on alert. Depending on where the tree is located, it may be the utility company’s responsibility to trim it as well. For instance, if the tree is partially located on public land, the utility company typically bears the responsibility for making sure it is properly trimmed.

On the other hand, if the tree is located on residential property, the homeowner is responsible for ensuring the tree is trimmed back. In this case, you still need to notify your utility company of the situation. Many times, if your tree is already encroaching on the power line, the company will send a vegetation management contractor (VMC) to your home to trim the tree back to regulation distance.

Depending on the distance from the tree to the power line, the utility company may allow you to hire your own arborist to perform the work. If the utility company does allow you to hire your own arborist, Mr. Tree provides 24/7 emergency service. Even if the utility company does send a VMC to trim the tree, you may want to hire an arborist on your own to remove the debris left behind or perform additional tree shaping.

Contact Your Local Arborist

A VMC acts on behalf of the utility company to ensure your tree is trimmed back to the required distance. However, the problem may persist in the future if left unattended. That’s why it’s in your best interest to contact your local arborist to assess the situation. Your arborist can prune the tree back further or advise you if tree removal is necessary.

Annual maintenance and regular pruning are often the best ways to ensure a tree does not become a safety hazard. Tree pruning isn’t simply to beautify the trees on your property, but to also keep them healthy and minimize risks to your family’s safety.

Mr. Tree offers preventative maintenance as well as hazard maintenance for many types of emergency situations. If you suspect that a tree’s health is compromised, do not hesitate to reach out to us 24/7, 360 days a year.

Be Proactive

Since it takes some time for trees to grow, you may not have been the homeowner when the tree in question was planted. Perhaps you did plant the tree and want to learn from the mistake. Regardless of how the tree grew close to the power line in the first place, the best measure you can take going forward is to be proactive in researching where to plant trees and how to care for them properly.

As we mentioned, preventative maintenance is key. A skilled arborist can identify a potential problem before it becomes a full-scale hazard, saving you from costly tree removal services in the future. So the first step is to schedule regular maintenance appointments with a skilled and licensed arborist.

Also, make sure to do your research before planting a tree in your yard. A good rule of thumb to follow when putting your green thumb to use is to avoid planting any trees that could grow within 25 feet of a power line. To select the proper location, you’ll need to take into account the average mature height of the tree and its spread before planting. This will allow you to determine how tall and wide the tree will be at a mature height so you can plan accordingly.

Professional Tree Trimming

We want to help you prevent hazardous situations before they arise. Tree service is dangerous work. Anything beyond some basic trimming should never be performed on your own, regardless of whether a tree is located close to a power line or not.

So be sure to call in the pros at Mr. Tree for your tree service needs. From trimming to pruning to shaping, we will help keep your landscaping in the best possible shape while ensuring your property is free of any potential hazards posed by your trees. Whether you need us for basic maintenance or emergency services, we’re available to help year-round.