More in this section

Tree trimming

Power line sparking next to tree branches.

Enlarge image: Power line sparking next to tree branches.

Call 911 if a tree is touching or leaning over overhead lines or hydro pole, AND is:

  • smoking, sparking, or burning;
  • making a loud zapping or popping noises.

Stay at least 10 metres away. Do not trim the tree or move any power lines.

Our responsibility

We only trim trees and vegetation if they are a threat to safety or our infrastructure. In an emergency, we may do this work without notice.

Power line voltage and tree growth rates determine how far trees are trimmed back for clearance. We may do this work ourselves or contract it out to an arborist. To safely trim trees or vegetation around overhead lines, we may temporarily shut off the electricity.

Debris clean-up is the property owner’s responsibility.

Your responsibility

Private and public property owners are responsible for keeping trees, shrubs, and vegetation on their property clear of overhead lines and hydro poles.

Trees and vegetation should be trimmed back if they:

  • have overhead lines passing through them from a hydro pole to a house;
  • are leaning close to, but not touching, overhead lines or hydro poles.
Overhead line goes from hydro pole through the branches of a large tree next to a house.

A tree on private property has grown into overhead lines running from a hydro pole to a house. Trimming the tree is the responsibility of the property owner.

Enlarge image: Overhead line goes from hydro pole through the branches of a large tree next to a house.

A large tree next to the road leans close to overhead lines.

A tree on public property leans close to overhead lines. Trimming or removing the tree is the responsibility of the city, town, or municipality.

Enlarge image: A large tree next to the road leans close to overhead lines.

Debris clean up

It is the property owner’s responsibility to remove any debris.

If we trim trees or vegetation in an emergency situation, it is still the property owner’s responsibility to clean up debris left on site.

Tree trimming contacts

Your options depend on whether the trees are on private or public property. If a tree’s roots are on public property and it is leaning on overhead lines in your yard, the tree is on public property.

Some trees, such as elms, cannot be trimmed or removed during certain times of the year unless there is an immediate safety hazard.

If you have concerns, contact us.

If the trees or vegetation are causing a power outage, you can report the outage online.

Public property

A city, town, or municipality is responsible for trees or vegetation on its public property. Contact your local civic authority about any potential hazards.

Private property

You may trim or remove trees and vegetation on your own property, but we strongly recommend you hire a qualified arborist to do the work. They are trained to work around overhead lines and hydro poles.

You, or the arborist, can request a temporary electricity disconnect to safely trim your trees and vegetation. We may require a tree safety assessment or tree investigation before we will process your temporary disconnect request.

Tree safety assessment request

Send us photos and information about potential hazards on private or public property. We will assess the situation and advise you what to do next.

If the situation is your responsibility, you or your qualified arborist can request a temporary electricity disconnect to safely trim around the trees or vegetation. We may require a tree safety assessment or tree investigation before we will process your temporary disconnect request.

For this request, we require 2 photos that clearly show:

  • a clear view of the overhead line or hydro pole in the tree or vegetation;
  • the entire tree, including the ground, hydro poles and overhead wires, and any nearby buildings.

Request a tree safety assessment