Tree Trimming

Trees and Power Lines

Public safety, system reliability and cost control are important to the Marquette Board of Light and Power. Trees and tree limbs coming in contact with high voltage power lines are a serious safety concern, a leading cause of power outages, and add to the cost of providing electric service. To minimize the number of tree related incidents, the MBLP utilizes a right-of-way maintenance program. This involves removing and trimming of trees and clearing of underbrush in the transmission and distribution line right-of-ways.

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The program takes place along transmission and distribution line right-of-ways and easements only. Trees over service lines (lines connecting a customer's house or business to the pole) are the responsibility of the property owner. Where trees present an immanent and clear danger to the system or the public, the MBLP will, at the request of the property owner, trim or remove trees. The request must be made via the Tree Trimming Agreement or Tree Removal Agreement which must be submitted to our Distribution Office located at 2200 Wright Street in Marquette.  Trees must be clearly identified by color-coded ribbons which are available from the Distribution Office.

It is the policy of the MBLP to brush our entire system on a 6 year, rotating cycle. Our system is divided into 6 separate areas not including the City of Marquette. Each of these areas outside the city is brushed once every 6 years.

Customers in the area where brushing is scheduled will receive notification via a message in their monthly statement as well as a notice in the Mining Journal. Yearly brushing projects typically start in early July and run through late October.

You can also get information regarding avoiding tree and utility conflicts at this website.

Maintenance Program Guidelines

  • All second growth trees, leaning danger trees, and associated ground brush with the exception of lawn shrubs, fruit trees, and other ornamentals are removed. Brush, aspen, pine and other small timber is chipped and disposed of by the MBLP.
  • All saleable hardwood four (4) inches or greater in diameter will be left along the edge of the right-of-way until project completion. During this time period, landowners adjoining the brushed right-of-ways may remove any cut timber for their personal use. Upon request, after project completion, remaining timber will be picked up and disposed of by the MBLP.
  • All trimming, both initial and re-trimming, is governed by approved principles of modern arboriculture. Reference: National Arborist Association, "Pruning Standards for Shade Trees".
  • All overhanging of nearby trees, saplings or brush endangering the safe operation of the electric lines, is considered as requiring trimming.
  • All dead or broken limbs, branches or stubs above the level of the conductors and which endanger the life of the tree or the safety of the lines shall be removed.
  • Protruding lower limbs on trees side cleared shall be cut back to the trunk of the tree if possible. Wherever trimming a tree which might be easily climbed and thus enable a person to come in contact with a conductor, low branches that would be helpful in climbing shall be removed from all sides to make the tree generally symmetrical.
  • All cuts will be made so as to provide maximum protection to the trees and to ensure proper healing of the wound.
  • Removed trees are cut as near the ground line as possible, but in no case more than four inches (4") above the ground line.

For additional information, contact the Distribution Department at 906-228-0300.