Tree trimming near power lines could make difference in severe weather

(Western Mass News photo)

More wild weather in the forecast could bring damaging winds next week.

However, regular tree trimming could make all the difference when it comes to keeping your home powered up.

This is the time of year where tree trimming is on the mind of many homeowners.

With dangerous winds in the forecast Sunday, toppled trees could threaten power lines.

"If you were out the other day and saw that wind blowing and branches that were whipping around, you know that trees are the number one cause of power outages," said Priscilla Ress with Eversource. Mother Nature brought torrential downpours and roaring winds earlier this week, which caused power outages. "This is a good time of year to trim. A lot of people go out and do this in the fall. Great time to take stock and see is there anything here that could actually be interfering with electric lines," Ress added. Eversource crews continue to trim year-round, but homeowners are responsible for their own property. That includes keeping branches away from low-voltage wires connecting their homes to the main utility poles.

"It would be so easy to say, it's only a large tree, an old tree. Any tree can come down especially in this kind of weather," Ress noted. Tree trimming near power lines is dangerous and knowing what to look for can be tricky. When in doubt, get help. "We never want a homeowner to go anywhere near an electric line. Hire a professional who is trained to do tree work and branch work," Ress noted.

The winds have calmed today, but more rain on the way could lead to toppled trees. "When you have a prolonged period of heavy rains like we're having right now, the ground becomes saturated and often the deadwood in the trees can get saturated, too," said Barry Croke, senior arborist with Eversource. This weekend's strong wind could mean more damage, but before the fickle New England weather changes, homeowners can always ask Eversource for guidance. "Just call us. We always come out and assess the situation," Croke added. For more about how to report a tree that you think needs to be trimmed, and other useful information, you can CLICK HERE.

Copyright 2017 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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