MAINTAIN SAFE AND RELIABLE ELECTRIC SERVICE

KEEP TREES AND BRUSH CLEAR OF POWER LINES

VEGETATION MANAGEMENT

WHAT IS IT?
To insure reliable continuity of electric service to our members, ECEC must, from time to time, adequately clear the right-of-way of tree problems. Tree conditions on our overhead lines can cause interruption of power, increased line loss due to arcing or burning, and a potential safety concern if the lines are downed because of the trees. To better serve our members, ECEC utilizes the services of an experienced tree cutting contractor. However, our line crews are trained to recognize hazardous conditions. They know the different tree species and understand how their growth patterns can cause line clearance problems in the future.
HOW IT WORKS
  • If we are going to service the area you live in, we will contact you by mail before removing any trees, unless it is an immediate hazard for the public or our employees.
  • To efficiently maintain our electric lines, our crews will trim, cut down, or spray the vegetation.
  • In your yard our tree cutting crew will chip the brush and haul it away. All other areas, brush will be piled. The wood will be left on your property for your use. The stumps will be treated to inhibit re-growth.
  • This work is done in the interest of public safety, service reliability, and to provide electric service in the most cost-efficient manner.

Trees are the leading cause of lengthy service interruptions to our members. Maintaining trees and brush at regular intervals is vital if we are to supply reliable electric service.

TREE TRIMMING

NEAR HIGH VOLTAGE LINES
On rural rights-of-way, generally all tall-growing and woody species will be removed to a width of 15 feet on either side of the line. Dead or dying trees that are located beyond the R/W edge will be removed if they are deemed a hazard. Trees with severe lean toward the line and beyond the R/W edge may also be removed.
NEAR SERVICE WIRES
Cutting and trimming required near service wires is usually considerably less than near high voltage lines. Service wires are those running from the ECEC owned pole with transformer to the meter location, which is usually the house or meter pole. Trimming around service wires is generally between 3 to 7 feet.

BRUSH CONTROL

HERBICIDE APPLICATION
During the months of June through September, crews perform a foliar herbicide application to brush that is occupying the powerline right-of-way. This is typically performed two growing seasons after the line is cleared. Generally, low-growing brush such as hazelnut, dogwoods, plum, etc. is not treated. All herbicides are classified as general-use by the EPA. All applicators are licensed by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, Consumer Protection. If your property is on the schedule for spraying brush, you will be contacted by mail prior to the spraying.
NO HERBICIDE USE REQUEST
The cooperative will honor an individual request for no herbicide use under the following circumstances:
  • If the landowner agrees to maintain the rights-of-way in such a manner as to keep the power lines and any related equipment owned by the cooperative free and clear of obstructing trees and brush. If the landowner fails to perform the necessary tree and brush clearing in the future, the cooperative will perform the clearing, as deemed necessary, using mechanical or herbicide methods.
  • If the landowner agrees to pay for the cost of the cooperative's clearing crews to clear the rights-of-way manually, without the use of herbicides.
The landowner must enter into a written agreement with the cooperative to request no herbicide use.

Thinking of planting trees in your yard?

Before you start digging, learn how to safely plant trees around power lines with our Residential Planting Guide.

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