ActewAGL displeased by many Canberra trees

heli patrol

ACTEWAGL says their recent helicopter patrols have shown trees are too close to powerlines in many parts of Canberra.

ActewAGL would like to encourage Canberra residents to continue to monitor vegetation on their property.

ActewAGL asks the community to do the following:

  • Check that trees are 1.5 metres clear of powerlines. If they are already too close, contact an ActewAGL accredited tree surgeon.
  • Check there are 1.5 metres of clearance in all directions around the base of poles, meters, substations and mini pillars.

“ActewAGL helicopters were flying throughout February to inspect vegetation around our poles and wires,” ActewAGL Manager Works Delivery Clinton McAlister said.

“This year the helicopter was in the air for around 37 hours and covered 1,793kms across most rural and urban areas in the ACT.

“We were able to identify vegetation encroaching on powerlines that we would not be able to see from the ground. We are now working with landowners and occupiers to ensure the safety of our community and the network.

“Landowners and occupiers are responsible for keeping a clearance of 1.5 metres around powerlines. By ensuring this clearance is maintained, the ACT will continue to have the fewest electricity blackouts in Australia.

“If residents notice trees within the minimum safe distance of powerlines, please do not attempt to trim them yourself. This can pose serious safety risks. Only ActewAGL accredited tree surgeons should be contracted to trim trees within the minimum distance on your property.

“Trees touching powerlines can create blackouts and increase risk of fires and electric shock. In windy weather, trees can fall and bring down live electrical wires, creating a dangerous safety hazard and interrupting power supply.”

Information brochures and a list of ActewAGL accredited tree surgeons are available on the ActewAGL website at

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