CMP to trim trees in Knox, Waldo counties

Aug 02, 2014

Augusta — Central Maine Power, a subsidiary of Iberdrola USA, is performing tree trimming work in about 20 communities in Knox and Waldo counties during the coming weeks.

The work along utility lines is part of a $20 million annual vegetation management program to improve the reliability of its transmission and distribution lines.

“We maintain nearly 24,000 miles of roadside distribution lines on a five-year cycle of vegetation clearing, inspection, and repair,” said CMP Spokesperson Gail Rice, in a news release. “Contact with trees is the most frequent cause of blinking clocks and power outages, so customers should see better reliability as the crews trim along the roadsides in their towns.”

CMP’s arborists and contractors are working in Cushing, Belfast, Belmont, Brooks, Frankfort, Friendship, Knox, Liberty, Liberty, Lincolnville, Monroe, Morrill, Northport, Palermo, Palermo, Searsmont, Searsport, Swanville, Union, and Warren. Motorists are urged to use caution when they encounter tree crews working alongside Maine roads.

“These crews play a key role in helping CMP provide the safe, reliable service that customers depend on,” said Rice. “The work can be difficult, so we urge motorists who pass these crews to proceed slowly and at a safe distance.”

CMP contracts with professional arborists who are required to follow practices established by the International Society of Arboriculture. These include consideration for the health, shape, strength, growth rate, and appearance of trees before and after pruning. CMP notifies customers about its vegetation management activities every year with inserts in its bills. Customers can sign up to receive a notice when tree trimming is happening in their area. For more information, call CMP Customer Service at 1-800-750-4000.

Additional information about CMP’s tree care program, along with tips for tree planting and care can be found on CMP’s website at – click on “Usage and Safety,” then “Tree Care.”

Comments (3)
Posted by: Maggie Trout | Aug 03, 2014 11:49

Thank you for providing information, Mr. Lammert.  Is Lucas Tree the sole contractor for all of Knox and Waldo counties?  My comment wasn't solely for Rockland.

Posted by: PETER LAMMERT | Aug 03, 2014 08:24

As the tree warden in Thomaston, I have been working with CMP for over 30 years before the Maine Public Utilities Commission put the electric distribution companies, such as CMP and Bangor Hydro, on a strict five year pruning cycle. Thomaston was extremely lucky to have Lucas Tree workers Keith and Eric in the buckets pruning around the power lines in Thomaston. They did an excellent job and rarely a day went by when I didn't get a call from either of them, right from the bucket, with a question about just how much to prune or to come to a location to help explain the clearances from the wires for which they were pruning.

Lucas  Tree Experts did not get the local area contract when the situation that Maggie Trout alludes to above occurred. That company was replaced by Asplundh, the crews in the orange trucks. Lucas Tree has once again received the local contract and will be carrying out line clearance pruning in local towns.

If you have concerns about pruning the trees that abut the power lines in front of your property, please contact CMP at the numbers listed.

Now an observation for those of you that have very tall and very old and very leaning and another half dozen "verys". These are the trees that are now causing severe problems during storms as they are not in zone where they can normally be pruned or in fact removed but when they come down, and as sure as there is gravity and wind they will come down, they break poles and tear wires from adjacent poles for several spans. The repair of these breaks takes hours or longer.

So if you have one of these big old dying or dead "somethings" within striking distance  of a power line, especially in a roadside woodlot, please call CMP and have their registered forester come take a look.

Remember "The power outage you prevent, may be your own"

Posted by: Maggie Trout | Aug 02, 2014 11:04

"Customers can sign up to receive a notice when tree trimming is happening in their area. For more information, call CMP Customer Service at 1-800-750-4000."  It is not only a matter of being advised when cutting will occur.  The law allows direct consultation between persons, (and municipalities) with legal interest in the land on which trees are located.


During the less than professional arborist -supervised cutting experienced in 2010, clarification was obtained regarding notification.  Only the property owners where trees will be cut can file a complaint with CMP.  But anyone can request notification when trees will be cut in any particular area.


State Statute requires public notice to areas where cutting will occur is required at least 30-days prior to the initiation of any tree cutting.  Municipalities can request a public hearing if there are concerns.  Trees planted on municipal-owned land are entitled to the same protections.


Maine Revised Statutes Title 35-A Chapter 25, section 2522. 

3. Public notice.  Public notice is placed in at least 2 newspapers with circulation in the area where trimming, cutting or removal of trees is scheduled to occur at least 30 days before the trimming, cutting or removal of those trees. The notice must state that customers may request to be placed on the list, required under subsection 4, of persons who have requested to be personally consulted before the trimming, cutting or removal of trees;
[ 1993, c. 399, §1 (NEW) .]
 Customer notice list.  Before the trimming, cutting or removal of trees, the utility or entity confers with any person who requests personal consultation concerning the trimming, cutting or removal of trees on property in which the person has a legal interest. The utility or entity shall keep a list of persons who have requested personal consultation under this subsection. The utility or entity shall notify annually, in the form of a bill insert, all of the utility's or entity's customers of the opportunity to be on the list required under this subsection; and
[ 2011, c. 623, Pt. B, §12 (AMD) .]
5. Shade and ornamental trees.  Before removing a shade or ornamental tree, the utility or entity consults with the owner of the land upon which the tree is located. For purposes of this subsection, "owner" includes a person who owns the underlying fee interest in land encumbered with a public easement.
[ 2011, c. 623, Pt. B, §12 (AMD) .]
This section does not apply to trimming, cutting or removal of trees undertaken in emergency situations. [RR 1993, c. 1, §103 (NEW).] " 




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