WEST HARTFORD, CT — The town of West Hartford is being targeted by Eversource for more work to remove trees and tree branches that could disrupt power during bad weather events.
Eversource Thursday morning saidtrees cause 90 percent of outages during storms.
With severe weather happening more often, Eversource said it is launching a new, data-driven approach to vegetation management.
The energy company has identified electric lines on its network with the worst reliability performance and is looking to collaborate with property owners and community leaders to look at the vegetation along those lines, company officials said.
Using 10 years of outage data, Eversource arborists are working to understand how concentrated tree work, including retention and planting of appropriate utility-compatible trees can strengthen the grid to make it more resilient during powerful storms, the company said.
“Our goal is to find a collaborative solution with our customers and communities that has the potential to significantly reduce tree-related outages during storms,” said Eversource Vice President of Operation Services Steve Driscoll.
Using reliability data and storm outage history over the past 10 years, Eversource said it has identified 15 segments of the electric system in 13 communities to include in the program.
They are Chester, Clinton, Guilford, Mansfield, Middletown, Naugatuck, Newtown, Redding, Sharon, West Hartford, Windham and Woodstock.
The work in these data-selected problem areas involves tree removals within a targeted “fall zone” on over 700 properties, Eversource said.
This, Eversource said, is to help protect critical electric infrastructure for more than 8,200 customers and critical facilities such as fire and police stations and community storm shelters.
At the same time, Eversource said it will work with individual property owners on opportunities to retain and plant new “wire friendly” trees and pollinator plants in appropriate locations.
“Connecticut has a tree problem,” added Driscoll. “Drought, invasive insects and overall age are taking a toll on the state’s trees. We’d like to do something about it and at the same time improve reliability for our customers. Our goal is to collaborate with the communities and customers to educate them on the tree risks and the tree work that can have a positive impact on day-to-day reliability and resiliency during storms.”
To see the full Eversource release on this issue, click on this link.