As the state prepares to celebrate California Arbor Day this week, Pacific Gas and Electric Co. reminds customers to plant the “right tree, in the right place.” Even trees that are small when planted may grow to heights that can interfere with overhead power lines.
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The benefits of planting trees are abundant; trees keep homes cool by providing shade, enhance property values and clean the air. If the right tree is not planted in the right place, however, it can cause power outages and create a safety hazard. In fact, more than 90 percent of tree-caused outages come from healthy trees and branches that fall or grow into power lines.
Planting the right tree in the right place enhances public safety and reduces the potential for electrical outages. During this traditional tree planter’s holiday, PG&E offers the following tips for planting trees around your home or business:
Plant trees safely
If you are planting trees near high-voltage power lines remember:
Only plant a tree under power lines if it will grow to less than 25 feet at maturity near distribution lines. (This information is available at your local nursery.)
When planting near transmission lines, use only low-growing plants.
Call 811 at least two days before planting trees or landscaping, to have underground power lines and other utilities marked.
Keep all trees, equipment and people at least 10 feet away from high-voltage electric power lines.
PG&E should be notified if a tree grows closer than 10 feet to a power line. Call 1-800-PGE-5000.
For a free copy of PG&E’s “A Selection and Planting Guide to Small Trees Near Distribution Lines,” e-mail the request to: RightTreeRightPlace@pge.com. There is one for each of the three climate zones within PG&E’s service area; Northern California, Central California and Bay Area/Inland.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation, is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to 15 million people in Northern and Central California.