Power Dynamics: How We Handle High Voltage

The first rule of Woodpecker Tree Care is that safety is always the number one priority. This applies to everything we do, from loading gear to felling 60 foot spruces. Something that can be a hazard for a climbing arborist is high voltage lines, which trees can interfere with. Here is how we handle power lines while on the job, and the steps you may encounter if your tree is near high voltage lines.

In the case of an emergency, such as a tree fallen on a power line, call your provincial power company’s emergency line as soon as possible.

Our senior climbers have undergone training to ensure that they understand the dangers and procedures related to high voltage lines. As professional climbers, we are allowed to approach high voltage lines as long as we have enough clearance between the tree and the line. This distance is based on provincial power guidelines provided to our climbers during training. If there are high voltage lines near your tree, we will need to inspect the distance thoroughly before we can climb it.

Some wires are safe for us to climb near. These lines are often for communications, such as telephone and internet, and likely do not require additional preparation before we go to work. If the communications lines go through a tree’s canopy, we may need to do some extra rigging to ensure the lines are not damaged.

We always inspect trees before preparing estimates for clients, and we check for power lines. If there is a power line that concerns us, we will let you know and take the next steps.

If your tree is too close to the high voltage line, there are a number of options we can help you with so your tree work gets complete. Sometimes, we will recommend you contact your provincial power supplier so they can prune branches away from the line so we can work on the tree. Or, if the job is out of our ability due to the proximity to the line, we may refer you to another local tree company equipped to do line clearance.

If you are waiting on a power company before we can do tree work on your property, and you can’t get in touch with your power company after multiple attempts, let us know. We might be able to help, as we have worked with provincial power companies several times and are familiar with the process.

Contact us, and we’ll see if we can help.