Vegetation program to ensure power safety

Essential Energy will begin vegetation management works in Boorowa town this month to maintain minimum powerline clearances and ensure the ongoing safety and reliability of the local electricity network.

Acting regional manager Southern, Greg White, said the works aim to strike a balance between preserving trees in the area and ensuring power safety and reliability for the local community.

“Essential Energy’s priority is a safe and reliable electricity network and vegetation management is crucial to maintaining this,” Greg said.

“Trees coming into contact with overhead powerlines pose serious hazards to people, wildlife and the surrounding environment. The potential for bushfires, property damage, injury and unplanned power outages are all relevant risks to public safety.”

Essential Energy’s cyclical vegetation management program ensures minimum safety clearances are maintained between trees and overhead powerlines and helps to minimise the trimming required in the future, while also maintaining a reliable power supply.

Works will be undertaken by contractors who are qualified in all aspects of vegetation management and, where possible, in compliance with the Australian Standard AS 4373 ‘Pruning of Amenity Trees’.

“Our contractors use directional pruning techniques that remove branches growing towards a powerline and encourage re-growth away from the power network,” Greg said.

“This often requires trees to be trimmed to the nearest growth point beyond the minimum safety clearance. Over time, this will allow for vegetation re-growth, as required by regulations.

“While this can affect visual amenity, these techniques are considered best practice throughout the arboriculture industry and are used by most power companies in Australia.”

For helpful tips on appropriate species to plant near powerlines, download Essential Energy’s Tree Planting Guide at essentialenergy.com.au/trees or call 13 23 91 for more information.

Weather permitting, the vegetation work will conclude in late March.