Tree Pruning & Removal
Whenever tree work is planned, you will be notified in advance by receiving a door hanger packet that includes a letter from NIPSCO and a pamphlet. When tree removal is planned, you will receive an additional notice in the packet requesting that you contact the utility arborist working in your area to discuss the issues of concern identified during their inspection.
But before tree work is scheduled or performed, an arborist trained in utility operations will inspect trees near the power lines to determine whether pruning or removal is needed. Considerations during this assessment include:
- What is the physical condition of the tree?
- Are there hollows, cracks, splits, decay, disease, etc. that put the tree at increased risk of falling into the lines and causing an outage?
- Would removing the tree or limbs eliminate the hazard?
- What is the species of the tree and what is its natural mature height, crown spread, wood strength and rate of growth?
- Will future growth lead to increasing conflict with the power lines?
- What voltage is the power line and what is the position of the tree in relation to the line? The greater the voltage, the greater the clearance distance required.
- What will be the visual and health impact of the work on the tree?
- Would the amount of required clearance impact the tree to such an extent that complete removal would be recommended?
When We Prune a Tree
All pruning methods meet the standards and practices established by the American National Standards Institute’s A300—Tree Pruning Standard, the International Society of Arboriculture, the Tree Care Industry Association and the Arbor Day Foundation. Before any pruning begins and after arriving at your property, our tree contractor is to knock at the door to announce themselves and then begin work. All pruning work we do along power lines is done by directional pruning techniques that result in limbs being cut back to another existing branch, crotch or trunk. This approach tends to guide new growth away from power lines while taking advantage of the natural ability of trees to heal-over pruning cuts made at those locations.
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When We Remove a Tree
NIPSCO understands the many benefits of trees to our environment and their contribution to the quality of life in the communities we serve. We will only completely remove trees when it is prudent or necessary to do so. Trees are cut down only with the consent of the land owner and only after they have been identified by our arborists as being a high or immediate risk to safety or reliable electric service.
All arrangements made with you related to tree removal will be documented in writing and a copy of the agreement provided to you. The arborist will then mark the trees and let you know a general time frame for when the work is scheduled. Upon arriving at your property, our tree contractor is to knock at the door to announce themselves and then begin work.
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When the job is done, tree crews will chip and haul away smaller trimmings and do a general clean-up of the work area. Larger limbs that have value as firewood will be cut into manageable lengths and left at the base of the tree for your use unless other arrangements have been made. The resulting wood will be handled per your written agreement. Our crews do not clean-up or remove branches and debris that occur during storm restoration efforts.