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Right-of-Way Clearing

In order to provide safe and reliable electricity to our members, Chugach has a year-round program to remove trees and other vegetation from our easements. Also commonly called right-of-way clearing, properly maintaining these areas is required by the National Electric Safety Code. Chugach’s program utilizes best practices in vegetation management and has been a Tree Line USA utility since 1999.

Trees falling into power lines are one of the leading causes of power outages. Keeping the easement—or right-of-way—clear reduces tree-related outages, and allows crews to safely and efficiently restore power after an outage or perform maintenance when required. An easement with trees growing into the power lines is a safety hazard for crews and the public.

The work includes taking down trees and brush within the full width of the easement, which is generally 10-feet on each side, for a 20-foot span. After clearing an easement, two-foot-sized pieces are left behind for locals to use as firewood. Tree stumps are either cut to within a few inches of the ground or ground up with a mulcher or mower. Trees outside Chugach’s easements are not removed without signed permission from the property owner.

The Chugach tree-clearing program runs on a three-year cycle, meaning we try to cover our service area every three years. Recent warmer winters and summers have led to faster vegetation growth, so it is critical we stay current with our program. Homeowners will receive a mailer a minimum of a week before easement work is to begin in their area. To report a danger tree, please call our Danger Tree Hotline at 907-762-7227 or use our online form. For questions about Chugach’s vegetation clearing program, please call 907-762-7661.

Vegetation Management Plan

Presentation to the Girdwood community discussing 2024 right-of-way clearing plans: