Removing Trees Near Power Lines in Winchester, Virginia: What You Need to Know

Customers often have questions about how and why Dominion Energy manages trees and plants near our power lines. At Dominion Energy, we understand the importance of providing safe, reliable, and affordable electrical service. To ensure this, we cut down trees and shrubs adjacent to our rights of way (the areas around power lines) and provide faster access to our crews during service restoration and maintenance work. It's essential to remember that trees conduct electricity and should be considered highly hazardous.

Never touch a fallen cable and stay away from trees or branches that come into contact with power lines. Many trees within or near the right-of-way of power lines pose some level of risk to the electrical system. Severe weather conditions, such as wind, floods, and lightning, can increase that risk and cause trees or tree branches to die. Some trees are more prone to failure due to structural issues, diseases, species characteristics, insect damage, or other problems.

A good example of how an introduced pest can adversely affect forest health is the dramatic rise in the mortality of ash trees in North America due to the emerald ash borer (EAB).Utility arboriculture classifies trees that can impact power lines as hazardous trees or hazardous trees. A dangerous tree is any tree that can come into contact with power lines when it grows or falls inside the lines, or when the lines in the tree sway or sink. The tree's proximity to power lines and equipment determines that it is a hazardous tree, regardless of the tree's health or condition. At Dominion Energy, we follow the U. S.

national standard for tree care operations (ANSI A300) for tree pruning with the support of arborists and other tree care experts. Before you or your contractor can prune or remove trees near service lines (cables that go from the pole to the house), call 800-242-9137 to ask us to shut off the power. We avoid brushing trees because uncut trees can quickly regain their original height and the large number of shoots that grow quickly are susceptible to breakage and damage by storms. Trees and tree branches that fall on power lines during storms are a major cause of power outages.

Victor Ulmer
Victor Ulmer

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