TOLEDO – Toledo Edison recently announced upcoming tree trimming and vegetation management work in communities across its northwest Ohio service area. This year’s $5.5 million tree-trimming program is designed to help keep power flowing to customers by helping to prevent tree-related outages, such as those that can occur during the spring and summer storm season.
Since the beginning of the year, tree contractors have trimmed trees along more than 150 miles of electric lines across the greater Toledo area. The company’s program remains on track to complete an additional 1,100 miles of tree-trimming work by the end of the year. Similar work is performed annually by FirstEnergy transmission companies along high-voltage power lines in the company’s service territory.
Tree trimming is done on a four-year cycle. The program includes inspecting vegetation near the lines to ensure the trees are pruned in a manner that helps preserve the health of the tree while also maintaining safety near electric facilities. Trees that present a danger or are diseased may be removed.
“Trees are a leading cause of power outages, and we complete proactive tree-trimming work each year to prevent tree-related outages during severe weather,” said Ed Shuttleworth, president of FirstEnergy’s Ohio operations. “This work, paired with the vast upgrades we’re making to our local power system, undoubtedly helps minimize the impact of weather-related outages to keep the power flowing safely and reliably to customers.”
Communities where tree trimming will take place this year include Archbold, Delta, Fayette, Lyons, Metamora, Pettsville, Swanton and Wauseon.
As part of its notification process, Toledo Edison works with municipalities to inform them of tree-trimming schedules. In addition, customers living in areas along company rights-of-way are notified prior to vegetation management work being done.
The vegetation management work is conducted by certified forestry experts under the company’s direction, including Arbormetics Solutions, Jaflo Inc., Asplundh Tree Expert Company, Nelson Tree Service Inc. and Penn Line Service.
In the air, helicopters equipped with aerial saws began trimming trees in April to maintain proper clearances along hard-to-access transmission and distribution corridors throughout Toledo Edison’s service area. The aerial saw is typically deployed along transmission and distribution lines in areas that may be environmentally sensitive or inaccessible to bucket trucks and other vehicles. This method typically covers more area in a day than a ground crew might complete in a week. The saw also eliminates the risk of injury to workers using bucket trucks or climbing trees to cut limbs near high voltage equipment.