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In order to provide safe and reliable electric service to our customers, trees must be properly maintained and kept clear of electric power lines. Trees are a leading cause of electrical power outages. In fact when trees and power lines touch it is a very dangerous situation to anyone in close proximity to the tree.
To help maintain safe, reliable electric service to our customers, Citizens' Electric has implemented an aggressive right of way clearing and trimming program to control brush and trees in the vicinity of our power lines.
When Citizens' Electric identifies an area that needs trimming, the customers will be contacted at first by letter, stating Citizens' Electric or our contractors will be in your area trimming or removing trees along our right of way. This gives the customer the opportunity to contact us with any questions or concerns. Once the crew actually moves into the area, the foreman attempts to contact the property owners before entering your property to explain the extent of trimming planned. This contact could be by personal visit, phone call or a door tag left on your door a few days before work will be done.
Citizens' Electric uses directional pruning techniques; these techniques were developed by the National Arborist Association and published by the National Standard Institute (ANSI). Directional pruning is the accepted standard by the National Arbor Day Foundation and the International Society of Arboriculture.
Directional pruning removes the entire branch or limb back to the main trunk of the tree. In this way the future tree growth is directed away from the power lines. Directionally pruned trees may look odd at first, however in the long run it is much better for the health of the tree by making them less susceptible to pest and decay problems, and less likely to drop branches during storms.
To provide adequate clearance around power lines, some trees require more pruning than others, if the pruning cannot be done without severely impacting its health or shape they will need to be removed. The property owner is notified as a courtesy before the removal is done. However, electric utilities have the right of way easements that give the utility the right to remove any tree interfering with the maintenance or operation of the system.
After a tree is pruned or removed, small tree limbs and branches are chipped; wood that is too large for the chipper will be left on the property and is the responsibility of the property owner to dispose of.