There are many ways Egyptian Electric Cooperative provides you with safe, reliable electric service. One of the most common – and crucial – ways, is referred to as right-of-way clearing (or vegetation management). A right-of-way (ROW) refers to a strip of land underneath or around power lines that your electric cooperative has the right and responsibility to maintain and clear. Trees must grow at a distance far enough from conductors where they will not cause harm to individuals or disruption to electrical service. Specifications can vary, but a general guideline of maintaining a safe distribution ROW is a minimum of 15 feet of clearance on either side of the primary conductors. Also, maintaining a cleared right-of-way helps with pole inspections and better visibility of rotten or broken poles that could have otherwise gone undetected.
ROW clearing is also critical to ensuring that we provide members with affordable electricity. Egyptian Electric Cooperative maintains over 1,900 miles of line that serve nearly 15,000 members. Staying ahead of the game, keeps us from having to come out after a storm to restore power due to fallen trees and poles. Oil Field Electric, or OFEC as you may see on their trucks, is currently contracted with Egyptian Electric to fulfill all our day-to-day tree trimming needs. When a tree encroaches on the safe distance, our vegetation management team will trim back branches and brush using chainsaws, bucket trucks, tree climbers, brush chippers and mowers. ROW clearing also keeps your family safe by ensuring that tree branches do not become energized due to close contact with a downed power line. Power lines can energize tree branches which is incredibly dangerous – even deadly. Be mindful when around trees close to power lines, and make sure your children know that climbing trees near power lines is extremely dangerous. Also, please keep in mind, that if you have a tree with a limb near the line(s) that looks hazardous, or you are considering trimming a tree that is in danger of falling on the lines, we ask that you contact us before doing any work. If there is any chance a limb or tree could strike a power line in the removal process, we would prefer our crews to remove the limb or tree in question.
The scheduled right-of-way work for 2018 will be lines serviced off five of our substations: Airport, Campbell Hill, Murphysboro, Pyatt and West Carbondale. The areas to which it will concern are the Ava, Campbell Hill, Cutler, De Soto, south of Pinckneyville, Vergennes, Elkville, south of Murphysboro, west and north of Carbondale areas. If your lines will be effected, you should receive a post card in the mail prior to tree work being done in your area. Travis Deterding, our Forestry Supervisor, will be happy to answer any questions you may have, or meet you on site, if necessary.
Herbicide applications will take place in the same 2017 tree cut areas of the Finney, Grassy, Evansville and Bremen substations.