Making sure that our customers have safe & reliable service year-round is at the root of everything that KPUB does. Tree trimming is just one way that we protect our system to ensure we keep the lights on safely and reliably for you all.
We’re committed to providing reliable electric service to you, and to do that, we must maintain properly cleared and accessible rights of way around our lines and equipment.
Trees are one of the biggest drivers of power outages in the United States, ranking in the top four with squirrels and other wildlife, weather and overhead equipment issues. During storms or high winds, tree limbs can fall onto power lines and cause outages. Trees that fall into power lines due to high winds or storms can knock out power to hundreds of customers in a matter of seconds. Additionally, utility poles can snap due to the weight of fallen trees, significantly increasing the outage time that it takes our crews to restore power. While not all storm-related outages can be prevented, we can certainly minimize the damage by keeping rights-of-way clear.
In order to ensure reliable electric service, our crews may trim trees away from power lines that are in contact with, or have the potential to come into contact with, power lines as located within rights-of-way, easements or pruning zones.
Contractors & right-of-way
To help manage our tree trimming program, KPUB employs contractors who use techniques established by the electric and tree care industries to meet federal standards for clearance from power lines while keeping trees healthy.
In addition to tree trimming, KPUB may also manage vegetation in our rights-of-way by pruning, removing, or replacing trees, cutting brush, mowing and applying herbicides to prevent interruption of service.
All applicable safety requirements regarding vegetation management within public power line rights-of-way are addressed by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), American Public Power Association (APPA) and the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA).
Click here to learn more about KPUB’s tree trimming program and how our team uses industry-wide standards to keep everyone safe.
Request a tree trimming service
If you notice tree limbs interfering with our power lines, request a tree-trimming service online or call us at 830.257.3050, Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. A service order will be issued, and a representative from KPUB will inspect the tree to determine if the trimming is required within our clearance guidelines.
Trimming trees near electrical equipment is dangerous—never do it yourself. Property owners should never prune trees within 10 feet of a power line. Electricity can jump from the power lines to your body, your tools, or nearby branches, causing injury or even death. Customers have the option of calling KPUB to request the electricity be turned off temporarily while any tree trimming is occurring by outside tree service companies/third-party businesses.
If a customer is trying to establish new electric service with KPUB, it is the customer’s responsibility to ensure that the site has been cleared of trees within that proximity. After service is established, the customer is responsible for coordinating necessary outages for any routine tree trimming maintenance to ensure that it’s done safely—KPUB will not remove or trim vegetation for power lines operating at voltages below 600 V.
For Non-KPUB wires, please contact your local phone or cable provider. KPUB does not trim or remove trees away from telephone, DSL, or cable television wires.
Tree debris after a storm
Even with our proactive tree trimming program, high winds, heavy rain or ice can bring trees and branches onto KPUB’s electric lines and cause outages. Our tree contractors clear the toppled trees and limbs from the wires so that our line crews can restore power. To continue restoring electricity to more customers as quickly as possible, crews will not remove tree debris; it is the customer’s responsibility to remove the debris from the property.
Trees and power line safety
- Do not allow children to climb or play in any tree located near a power line.
- Electric wires may be concealed in the trees or shrubs you want to trim. Before you trim trees or shrubs, inspect the area carefully to ensure that it’s clear of wires.
- Contact with the wires could result in severe injury or death.
- Especially during damp weather, electrical shock can occur when a person touches a tree that is touching a wire. It is not necessary to actually touch the wire itself to sustain a serious or even fatal electric shock.
Before planting trees
- Look up!
- Consider the mature size of the tree.
- Trees that will mature over 15 feet in height should be planted well outside the right-of-way corridor to avoid future contacts with the power lines.
- Additional information about planting the right tree in the right place, provided by SafeElectricity.org
Don’t forget to call 8-1-1 before you dig!