A Word from Our CEO - Choose the Right Trees
Choose the Right Trees for Electrical Safety and Reliability
It is estimated that there are 360 species of woody plants in Arkansas with about 190 considered to be trees. The remaining are considered shrubs or woody vines.
The largest family of trees in Arkansas is the Oaks with 29 species, the Hawthorns with 18 species and the Hickories with ten species. There are hundreds of other tree genera, and if you decide to plant a tree this Spring to provide a wind break, shade or beautify your landscape,Craighead Electgric reminds you to remember the importance of planting tall-growing trees safely and away from power lines. The wrong choice can result in issues with your electrical service in the future.
Please take the time to research tree selections by consulting your local arborist, tree nursery or utility experts who can provide assistance in designing a beautiful, shade-filled yard with trees appropriate for each area of the landscape.
Choosing the right tree for the right place is crucial, especially when it comes to power lines. Trees and wood in general conduct electricity and can create a safety hazard if grown close to electric lines. Power outages or momentary interruptions can occur when branches come into contact with overhead lines. Electrical arcing and sparking from a wire to a nearby branch also can cause fires.
However, a greater concern is the safety risk when children climb trees near power lines. Accidental contact of electric wires with a tree limb or playing and trimming around the tree can be fatal. Parents and caregivers are urged to teach children never to climb trees near power lines.
If you have trees that appear to be growing into power lines, please contact Craighead Electric. Never try to prune them yourself. Craighead Electric has skilled professionals trained to safely prune and trim trees for electric line clearance.
To avoid future electrical hazards, safe planting tips to remember include:
- Consider the mature height of a tree. Never plant a tree that could grow to 25 ft. or more near a power line. Tall growing trees should be planted a minimum of 20 feet away from power lines and 50 ft. away to avoid future pruning. A mature height of less than 15 ft. is recommended for trees planted near power lines.
- Do not plant near underground utility services. Tree roots can grow to interfere with underground pipes, cables and wires. Future repairs to these facilities also could damage the health and beauty of nearby plants and trees.
- Keep areas around electric meters, transformers or other electrical equipment free of vegetation that could limit utility service access.
- Before digging, call 8-1-1 to have the locations of underground utilities marked so that accidental contact, damage and injuries can be avoided.
Have a Great Spring!
Craighead Electric Cooperative