In a storm, rights of way around overhead power lines and sharpened chainsaws make the difference. In the past four months, York Electric has seen three major storms that tested our system. Because of our diligent and proactive trimming schedule, crews were able to get the power back on when it mattered most.
Lineman Zack Smith says, “During an outage, it is our goal to be on the scene within an hour. We work hard, in all types of conditions, to restore power safely and as efficiently as possible. By keeping rights of way clear and accessible, we can do our job easier and get the lights back on quicker.”
As part of our 2019 Member Comfort Initiative, our team will continue dedicating time and resources to maintaining a clear right of way around our overhead lines the proven method to help prevent outages. Find the latest right-of-way schedule and download the map.
Right of Way Maintenance FAQ (5)
ROW refers to the corridor or pathway an electric line follows, whether it’s along the road or through the woods. ROW provides utility crews with access to lines for improvements, maintenance, and repairs. It also provides an operational safety zone between the electric lines and trees, buildings, etc. On the majority of its lines, York Electric holds easements that give it the right to clear land 15 feet from either side of the wire.
A clear ROW minimizes outages, improves power quality, reliability, and safety.
- Causes power outages
- Causes lights to blink
- Obstructs visual inspections, making repairs difficult and costly
- Blocks access for maintenance and repairs, causing delays
- Wastes electricity by drawing it to the ground
- Becomes a fire hazard
- Becomes a safety hazard for utility workers and members
- Children and adults should never climb, trim, or touch trees that contact power lines!
The ROW is cleared by cutting, trimming, mowing and where permissible, applying herbicides. In most cases, all shrubs, brush and trees are removed under primary (main), overhead power lines. They are also removed, as and around secondary, low-voltage power lines that bring power from the transformer to your meter. Cutting and trimming are done by trained, professional utility tree trimmers using specific and proven standards typical to the industry.
York Electric’s ROW maintenance program balances the preservation of natural habitats against the service reliability needs of our members and the safety needs of the general public. In fact, it can actually benefit the ecosystem and other natural environments. ROW maintenance efforts create open areas that encourage the growth of wildflowers, ferns, grasses, flowers, berries, and other low-growing shrubs.