PECO is investing more than $3 million in preventative tree pruning along 305 miles of aerial electric lines in Bucks and Montgomery counties to improve electric service reliability for approximately 43,000 customers, the company said Monday.
Work has begun in a few areas and the project will continue through March 2012. Vegetation causes about one-third of all electric outages. Preventative pruning around aerial power lines is vital to providing reliable electric service.
Pruning will be performed in the following Bucks County townships: Buckingham; Doylestown; New Britain; Upper Southampton; Warminster; Warrington; Warwick and Wrightstown. Work also will occur in Chalfont and New Britain boroughs.
In Montgomery County, pruning will be performed in Hatboro, as well as Montgomery Township.
“Our goal is to reduce the frequency of tree-related outages and keep the lights on for our customers,” said Alex Brown, manager of vegetation management. “Preventative maintenance programs like tree pruning and other vegetation management play key roles in providing the electric service our customers expect.”
This year, PECO is investing $33 million in its vegetation management program, which includes tree pruning around approximately 2,800 miles of aerial power lines on the electric distribution and transmission system across the service territory. The program also involves annual patrols of the system and pruning or clearing on a cyclical basis.
PECO’s vegetation management crews are trained in proper arboricultural pruning techniques, which are defined in the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) A300 Standard. This standard takes into account the type and location of the tree in relation to the overhead wires and the health of the tree. PECO notifies property owners prior to work beginning in each community. Areas where line clearance work is completed experience fewer outages and a significant improvement in electric reliability.
Based in Philadelphia, PECO is an electric and natural gas utility subsidiary of Exelon Corporation. PECO serves 1.6 million electric and 490,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania and employs about 2,400 people in the region.