Most right-of-way easements are 30 feet wide. We normally cut all brush to the ground, so there is a ground-to-sky clearance.
Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA) maintains more than 3,000 miles of power line. This is done seasonally, April through October, but power outages happen year-round. We clear for these three basic reasons:
- A clear right of way enables our line crews to quickly access power lines, identify outage causes and make repairs. Maintaining cleared rights of way has helped shorten the length of outages considerably.
- To prevent hazard trees from falling into the lines. Trees falling into power lines are one of the leading causes of power outages. As clearing progresses through our power grid, hazard trees are identified and removed.
- To prevent trees from growing into the line. Trees growing into power lines become energized and are hazardous to people, pets, and equipment. Also, electricity going into the ground costs us all money, similar to leaving your water running while nobody is using it.