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Don’t Trim Trees Near Power Lines

Trimming trees near power lines is a dangerous job that should be left to the professionals. Never attempt to trim trees near your power lines yourself. If you notice a tree branch that’s too close to a line, call San Patricio Electric Cooperative to report it.

SPEC has an obligation to provide safe and reliable electricity to our members. One of the ways we accomplish that is through our tree trimming program.

We provide regular tree trimming throughout our service territory. It’s a key component of SPEC’s everyday effort to maintain our power lines. This maintenance helps prevent outages, saves money and keeps our members and employees safe.

Trees growing in power lines can become energized and dangerous. If you were to come into contact with the tree in our line—by touching, climbing or trimming it—you could be electrocuted. Or, the energized line could cause the tree and surrounding area to catch fire.

Even branches that appear to be clear from the line can be blown several feet during a storm. To ensure these branches won’t make contact with the power line, we prefer to have at least 10 feet of clearance on either side of the line and 12 feet of clearance above and below it.

If you’re not sure whether a tree is too close to a power line, SPEC encourages you to exercise caution and call us to assess the situation. We want to ensure the area is safe for you and your family.

Overgrown trees also pose a challenge for our lineworkers. Trees and brush in a power line right-of-way can inhibit or block access for SPEC personnel, which could lengthen the amount of time it takes to find an outage cause and restore power. It also creates a safety hazard by limiting how the employee can climb the pole. Trees or brush growing too close to the pole could cause significant injury to a linemen should he fall.

SPEC contracts a tree trimming service to help prevent tree overgrowth near power lines, but we also rely on you to report any issues you see. You play a key role in the safety of your fellow members and co-op employees. If you happen to see a tree that needs attention, give us a call at 361-364-2220 or 888-740-2220.

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