Utility Power Line Safety
Large trees growing under or next to power lines can cause problems. In the Truckee Meadows region, NV Energy is responsible for keeping trees clear of its power lines. Their policy is intended to protect the public, public property and maintain system reliability. NV Energy does not clear lines that service individual homes. The line connecting your home to a power line is your responsibility.
NV Energy is a partner in the Truckee Meadows Community Forestry Coalition. Please visit NV Energy for more information.
If tree limbs are growing into power lines DO NOT ATTEMPT to clear them yourself. Contact a Certified Arborist who can assess the situation and safely remove the limbs.
Trees growing into power lines.
Branches that come into contact with electrical lines can cause power outages or may sometimes spark fires in trees. Trees can also become energized with electricity which can result in electrocution if someone climbs in the tree.
Trees that have been pruned away from power lines may look mutilated or misshapen. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) publishes the ANSI A-300 Standards for Tree Maintenance. These standards are approved by the International Society of Arboriculture and the US Forest Service.
It is possible that trees located under or near power lines are pruned on a routine clearing cycle and have possibly been topped in the past, or subject to other techniques that are no longer considered acceptable. Some trees may have been poorly pruned or are in otherwise poor condition due to care. In such cases, it may be wise to have the tree removed. Consult a Certified Arborist for an evaluation.
Use low growing trees if planting in areas below or near power lines. This will make for a safer, healthier and more attractive community forest in the Truckee Meadows!
Read more about avoiding tree and utility line conflicts from the International Society of Arboriculture.