BY CAROLINE SELLE — According to the City of Hyattsville, state regulations require Pepco to maintain a power line clearance every four years, which means the utility has been pruning trees frequently in 2015. Department of Public Works Director Leslie Riddle said she and City Arborist Dawn Taft have been diligent about holding the company’s contractors to the International Society of Aboriculture’s (ISA) standards.
After several instances in which trees were improperly pruned, the City “concurred that if it were to continue we would levy fines against [the contractors],” Riddle said.
Pepco is now required to contact the City of Hyattsville anytime its contractors are working within the city limits.
A list of tree work scheduled in Hyattsville is available at http://hyattsville.org/650/Pepco-Tree-Maintenance. Additionally, the City has posted information on how residents can refuse the removal or pruning of their tree.
“If a tree on private property needs to be removed, the property owner’s permission must be obtained. We will, however, trim trees on private property where tree limbs or branches encroach on our easement,” said Sean Kelly, senior media relations manager at Pepco. “Our easements on properties along the power line route give us specific rights to maintain those rights-of-way and keep them clear of trees and vegetation that could threaten the safety and reliability of the system.”
He said customers can call Pepco at 202.833.7500 with questions.