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- Trees and Reliability
Trees and Reliability
Line Clearance Program
Reliable electricity is not just a luxury; it’s an expectation. Our chief responsibility is to provide a reliable and safe electric distribution system, and trees are a major obstacle. To improve your service experience, we employ a proactive line clearance program.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission addresses the need for vegetation management as a measure of reliability and safety. Visit the FERC Electric Reliability page for more information.
What we do and why
Our line clearance standard is to obtain and maintain a ground-to-sky clearance of 15 feet, free from all obstructions, on each side of the power line. Recorded and prescriptive easements give us the right to access and use personal property to maintain our rights-of-way.
We have worked diligently to reclaim our rights-of-way, and are now in maintenance mode, including re-grooming and spraying. Following is a description of each method, with specific plans for 2017.
Re-grooming: Once the line is clear, we return to trim and mow for any new growth. We will re-groom in the following areas in 2017: Twin Lakes Substation: Wayne, Volinia, Silver Creek, Hamilton, Decatur, LaGrange, Pipestone and Keeler townships; Marcellus Substation: Marcellus, Flowerfield, Van Buren Porter, Prairie Ronde, Decatur, Volinia, Newberg and Penn townships; Jones Substation Calvin, North Porter, Constantine, Penn Newberg, Fabius and Newberg townships; and Palmyra Substation: Madison, Palmyra, Blissfield, Fairfield, Ogden, Riga, Deerfield, Raisin, and Adrian townships.
Spraying: We employ a long-term spraying strategy to manage continued regrowth in newly-cut areas. It effectively controls tall-growing trees and bushes while promoting low-growing plants that are beneficial to wildlife. It offers cost-effective, longer-term results, and is endorsed by a number of environmental, forestry and wildlife providers. We will spray in the following areas in 2017: Almena, Antwerp, Brady, Calvin, Constantine, Florence, Howard, Leonidas, Mason, Mendon, Milton, Mottville, North Porter, Ontwa, Oshtemo, South Porter, Texas, Van Buren, Wakeshma, White Pigeon and York townships in southwest Michigan; and Hudson and Medina townships in southeast Michigan.
Our contract crews dispose of branches and limbs in the most economic and practical manner possible. During regular line clearing activity, crews will remove branches and limbs within maintained or landscaped areas and leave wood for use by the homeowner or resident. In non-maintained areas, crews will leave wood, branches and limbs for use by the homeowner or resident or to decompose naturally. Midwest does not remove stumps after tree removal. During emergency power restoration, crews clear trees from our facilities and move to the next location. Midwest does not return to remove wood, branches and limbs.
Call Before You Dig
Whether you are a homeowner or a professional contractor, if you are planning a project that will involve digging call 8-1-1 to protect yourself and others from hitting underground utility lines.