Trees that grow too close to power lines can become a dangerous hazard, especially for children who might climb them.
Branches can break and fall onto lines, putting public safety and property at risk as well as interrupting power. By working with you, Wellington Electricity (we*) can keep our network safe and reliable.
Under the Electricity (Hazards from Trees) Regulations 2003, we* has responsibilities to work with tree owners to keep vegetation clear of overhead power lines. On our network, we use Treescape, a specialist tree maintenance company, to check and notify tree owners if their trees are too close to our power lines.
If you receive a notice, the tree(s) will already be too close for you to trim it safely. In these cases, a professional arborist authorised by us will be needed to cut back the tree(s) to a safe distance so that you can keep them trimmed. Trimming trees near power lines is extremely dangerous work – only approved arborists are allowed to trim trees within 4 metres of network power lines.
We’ll generally provide the first cut of a tree for free, but following that, it’s the tree owner’s responsibility to ensure tree trimming is maintained. Note that the free first cut or trim doesn’t apply to trees near private service lines, which aren’t covered by the Regulations (property owners are responsible for maintaining these lines on their property).
For more information on tree maintenance near power lines, download our tree maintenance brochure (below), take a look at WorkSafe's Code of Practice, and have a read through our Frequently Asked Questions. You can also download a list of vegetation contractors who are authorised by us to work close to power lines and can help you maintain your trees (below).
Spotted a hazardous tree? Phone 0800 248 148 as soon as possible, so that we can check it for safety without delay.
Phone us for an assessment
You can call 0800 248 148 (option 4) if you'd like us to assess a tree or other vegetation that's encroaching on power lines.
What can I do?
- If all parts of the tree are at least 4 metres away from power lines, you can trim the tree yourself, or hire an arborist to trim the tree for you (recommended)
- If any part of the tree is within 4 metres of power lines or you’ve received a notice from us, you’ll need a professional arborist authorised by us
- Download our tree maintenance brochure at the bottom of this page