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​Electricity infrastructure is the equipment that helps get power to your home or business. It's important to ensure there's room for our crews to work safely around this equipment so we can continue to provide safe, reliable electricity.

Preventative landscaping

As the property owner, you're responsible for any utility service cables beginning from your property line up to and including your power meter socket. These lines include both underground cables and overhead lines.

A big part of this responsibility is ensuring that any trees, shrubs, or other landscaping in your yard do not pose a risk or interfere with the utility lines. Before planting new trees, look overhead and all around the intended site. Note how far the tree planting site is from overhead utility lines and the easement; select trees that won't interfere with utility lines.

Safe trimming

If any of the vegetation on your property is encroaching on overhead lines or other electrical equipment, contact an arborist to prune and manage the growth.

Anytime you are working nearby electrical equipment, it's essential that the correct precautions are taken, including contacting EPCOR to temporarily disconnect the line to allow safe tree trimming for the arborist or yourself (at no cost to you).

Please call our emergency phone number in advance to ensure our crews can disconnect the power. This service is available every day, including Sundays and holidays, but may be delayed due to emergency work.

Learn more about trees and powerline safety.

Clearance requirements

To transport electricity from the generating station, there is a lot of different equipment involved. In most neighbourhoods, we rely on 3 key types of equipment to provide you safe and reliable power.

Please ensure any landscaping you do near power equipment meets proper clearances. We require a 1m clearance from power poles, and a 3m clearance from transformers, switching cubicles, and overhead lines.

​Power poles

Made of wood or metal, they carry electricity from home to home. Power poles are typically wood poles that provide support to the above ground electrical system. The poles support the power lines, transformers, switches, cable TV, and telephone lines that service your homes and businesses.

 

 

​Requirements

Clearance around the poles is important. The right clearance means our crews can climb, and work on and around, the poles to restore power, make repairs, or perform maintenance.

Power poles are partially buried 6 to 10 feet below the ground. This means crews may need to dig around the pole and perform below ground inspections. Digging around the poles may also be required to change the poles if they are damaged (i.e.: storm damage, vehicle collisions, degradation, etc.). Hard surfaces like concrete, asphalt or paving stones around the poles delay this work.

​Transformers

Green or grey boxes often found in front of your house next to the sidewalk. Transformers change high voltage power into the low voltage power used in homes and businesses. Each transformer serves several homes in the area.

Underground high voltage cables feed into the transformer, and smaller low voltage cables run to each home or business power meter.

​Requirements

Crews need room around the transformers so they can inspect and maintain them, and make any necessary repairs. Trees and bushes around the transformers pose a safety risk as their limbs may swing into the transformers while crews are working. Their roots can also damage the cables and connections.

 

 

​Switching cubicles

These can look similar to transformers. They help to route power between neighbourhoods, and also help us to protect the system using switches that turn off in the case of a fault, and protect the rest of the system.

 

​Requirements

When our crews are doing maintenance work or emergency repairs during an outage, switching cubicles allow us to bypass the area where they are working. Once the location of a problem is identified, switching cubicles are usually the first place our crews will go to restore as many customers as possible, and make the work site safe so crews can complete repairs or maintenance.

The crews use long rods to operate the switches so they can stay a safe distance away. Working safely with these switching rods requires enough room to work (free of bushes, trees, fences, or other landscaping).

The speedy restoration of power for all customers relies on easy access to switching cubicles.