Landscaping Around Electric Equipment

Trees and landscaping are fundamental components of an attractive and functional residential or commercial site.  As property owners, thought should be given to effects that landscaping may have on the ability of Johnson County REMC to provide dependable electric service.


Plan Ahead

As you start a project, survey your site.  Identify the size and scope of your project and note the limitations the site may present.  Design your landscaping for the future, not the present.  The International Society of Arboriculture recommends using the right tree for the right site.  Information about tree size and shape, and possible conflicts that may arise is available at our office.  As you design your project keep the utility right-of-ways in mind, and remember that your planting will grow.  Ten feet is the distance required to work safely around energized electric lines.


Overhead Lines and Equipment

Utility lines require a working clearance.  Avoid planting large trees near power lines. Allow space around poles so our equipment will have access for completing line maintenance and right-of-way vegetation management.


Underground Lines and Equipment

It is tempting to landscape around ground mounted equipment.  Avoid blocking the access door on pad mount transformers.  Leave ten feet of clearance to allow the line personnel safe access to the equipment.

We require a clear path to your meter.  At this time, we remotely read the meter but on occasions must have access to it.  It is best to keep this in mind when you are landscaping or planting.

In certain high traffic areas Johnson County REMC will place permanent signs marking the location of buried underground primary lines.


Right-of-Way and Vegetation Management

Johnson County REMC maintains over 825 miles of overhead electric utility lines.  These lines are inspected obstructing tree limbs are cleared on a three-year cycle.  We are obligated to maintain the clearances that provide a safe operating space around the power lines.  Our objective is to obtain the necessary clearance at each location that will maintain a 10-foot clearance that is required over the three-year cycle.  Different trees grow at different rates, so the amount of pruning that is performed at each site varies.  All vegetation management practices are performed in accordance with ANSI A300, ANSI Z133.1, the Shigo guide (Pruning Trees Near Electric Lines), and the International Society of Arboriculture (“ISA”) Best Management Practices.

Questions concerning tree trimming should be directed to the operations department at 317-736-6174 or click here for a tree trimming request form.


Points of Interest

Trees account for more than half of all power interruptions.

Trees damage power lines, create hazardous situations, and damage personal property by growing into power lines and provides a path to ground for the electric current.

Electricity travels at 186,000 miles per second.  If an electrical component is on fire, most likely, it is already ruined.  Do not try to extinguish an electrical fire by pouring water on it.

Johnson County REMC is responsible for our circuit up to and including the meter base.  Any problem with your panel or house wiring is the homeowner’s responsibility.