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Landscaping Safety – Part 3: Trees that Please without Shocking Unease

May 13, 2021, 14:12 PM

Spring is here and for many Albertans that means it’s time to maintain and beautify your yards. If your landscaping plans include planting or trimming trees, FortisAlberta wants to ensure you do so safely.

In part 3 of our Landscaping Safety series, we provide a few guidelines to follow when planting new trees or trimming mature trees to avoid creating a future or immediate electrical hazard and potential power outage.

Planting Trees around Electrical Facilities

When planting trees in your yard, it’s important to consider the future growth of each tree. Is there a chance that the tree’s roots may grow deep enough (0.3 metres) to interfere with underground cables and wires? Is there a chance the tree may ultimately grow into the overhead power lines and cause outages?

If you’re unfamiliar with the current buried facilities (electricity cables, telecommunications wires, pipes, etc.) on your property, always click or call. Check to see if there are existing easements, or Utility Right of Ways, on your property for the electrical equipment. You should not plant any trees or bushes within the easement or Utility Right of Way.

If planting tall-growing trees, ensure they are rooted at least eight metres from power lines as we require a minimum 6-metre side clearance from the edge of the tree’s foliage at maturity to the power line and/or power pole.

diagram tree planting

For more information on safely planting trees around our facilities, see our guidelines here.

Leave the trimming to professionals

Attempting to trim trees that are near or in contact with energized power lines can put you in danger of electric shock and may cause a power outage for you and your neighbours.

Our Utility Tree Trimmers are trained in how to work safely around energized powerlines and do their best to redirect growth while protecting the health of the tree. If the tree is touching a high voltage line, we will trim the tree for you. If the tree is touching a low voltage line, we will temporarily disconnect power and we will clear the immediate safety issue if there is one. You are still responsible for getting a third party to clear the rest of the tree once we are finished. To understand if the line you are dealing with is high voltage or low voltage please contact us.

Contact us at 310-WIRE (9473) or 1-866-717-3113 for any tree-related inquiries.

Think Before You Dig

Think Before You Dig

Whether you’re gardening, planting a tree or putting up a fence, you can avoid a serious electrical incident by submitting a locate request.

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