When there is a tree removal or trimming of hazardous limbs that needs to be done in close proximity to electrical wires, there are a couple of things that can be done with CL&P to greatly reduce any risks and save money with the tree service since it saves them time while reducing risks. The best part is these services are free from CL&P since it’s much more economical to be proactive versus coming out to an emergency call to repair downed wires.
Two Types of Electrical Wires
There are two electrical wire scenarios to consider; service wires and high wires. They can both kill you but the high wire will kill you faster since its carrying much higher voltage.
The high wires are generally the wires at the top of the telephone pole and some are shielded but I have been told if you provide a ground it will blow right through the shielding so I’ll take their word on that.
The second scenario is the service wire which is the wire that connects your house to the utility pole. These electrical wires are insulated for leaf and occasional branch contact. Note they will still electrocute you if there is any crack in this insulation so do not go near them!
Utilities Only Trim Trees Around High Wires
So now that you know the two types of wires out there you will understand why CL&P will trim trees around the extremely dangerous high wires but will not trim around service wires to your house. Tree trimming around service wires is the responsibility of the property owner. But, given the danger of these wires, don’t ever try to do this yourself. This is where you hire a professional tree service (like Barts Tree Service) who will coordinate removing/protecting the wires and removing the tree hazards.
Since there are two sets of wires, there are two separate departments that handle them at CL&P. One department will remove service wires from the house and the other department will cover and protect high wires.
Process for Covering High Wires
If both high wire covering and line removal are required, I always do this first since it takes longer to schedule and the covering will stay up until I call to have it removed.
- Call CL&P to have a line crew cover wires (call 800-286-2000)
- Provide the service address
- Provide a cross street
- Provide the pole number
- Provide a description of the work to be completed (for example, remove oak tree located next to pole)
- They can cover the wires and they can cover the insulators on top of the pole so be specific about what needs to be covered.
- CL&P will provide you with a Line Crew Request Number and date or date range for when work will be conducted.
- Once the tree work is complete, call CL&P Line Crew back at 800-286-2000, give them the request number, and tell them the line covering can be removed.
Process for Removing Service Wires From Your House
- Call CL&P Line Removal Desk (call 888-544-4826)
- Supply CL&P with property owner’s name and address
- Supply affected pole number
- Supply closest cross street
- CL&P will provide the available dates for line removal (generally a week or two out)
- CL&P will assign a request number
- If we (Barts) are setting this up for the client, I request the home owner fax a letter to CL&P that contains the following; date, request number, name, address, “I am aware the power will be disconnected from my house on date and reconnected later that afternoon to allow for tree work to be conducted”. Then sign and fax to 877-285-4448. Note that if there are multiple lines to be removed from separate homes, each home owner needs to send the fax letter.
- CL&P will show up between 8-9AM to remove the wires from the house and someone must be there to meet them.
- CL&P will return to reinstall wires between 1-2 PM unless they are called a couple hours prior to push out the time later in the day.
At Barts Tree Service, we also have certified electricians from Rodrigues Electric who can remove service wires from a house if the CL&P schedule is not conducive to meeting your needs. We also use Rodrigues Electric to remove the cable and telephone wires from the house.
For more information, here is a link to CL&P’s frequently asked questions page www.cl-p.com/faq/category.aspx?name=Tree+Trimming