[TowerTalk] 2 HAMS died in Kansas City

Roger (K8RI) K8RI-on-TowerTalk at tm.net
Tue Jul 15 15:08:26 EDT 2008

Richards wrote:
> Not so, Dick Tracy --  the power company here in Michigan
> comes by and trims the trees -- they removed five whole fir
> trees one day from my yard.

We must live in a different Michigan<:-)) Although the odds are we have 
the same power company, just different people.
There were several large Ash trees very near the power line in our front 
yard.  The Power company would do nothing about them.  One spring we had 
an ice storm and a different Ash tree went down over the lines in the 
woods just the North of our place. It basically tied the 13.8 (I think 
ours is 13,800) the 3/4" 75 ohm cable company's coax, and the ground 
together.  The whole area was without power for several days. It wasn't 
the only tree, the line comes through the woods for a mile to the South 
of us, and they were very poor about trimming them back.

*Finally* they decided it might be cheaper to clear the right-of-way 
instead of the constant repair.  They marked the trees and three years 
later still had done nothing.  By then the two *big* Ash trees were 
dead.  (Michigan has this little problem called the Emerald Ash  Borer 
killing our Ash trees which has resulted in our wood being quarantined.) 
I called and complained that the next good wind might just dump them 
over the power line as the line was within feet of the trunks that 
towered well over it.  They did come out this time and "trimmed the dead 
trees back" leaving me with two very large, tall, and HEAVY stumps that 
nearly reached the power lines.  However they did an excellent job of 
cleaning up. 

Sooo... I got out my trusty chain saw and felled the two stumps.  Can 
you imagine what a hard wood stump nearly two feet across and over 20 
feet tall weighs? Two people could barely lift a piece only 12 inches 
long.  They said the neighbors could feel it in their houses when the 
larger one hit the ground.  Fortunately the one neighbor wanted it for 
his fireplace so he and his son hauled them away.  It cost me $50 each 
to get rid of the stumps.  In the "Old days" I'd have just gone down to 
the hardware store and picked up about 4 to 6 sticks of 40% <:-))  When 
I was 16 I took care of stumps and rocks for the neighbors and bought 
the stuff by the case. Now days I doubt I could even get a license to 
use it.

At any rate about two years *after* that, they came through and marked 
the trees again.  As some of the branches of our two big Maple trees in 
the front yard overhung the lines they were going to just cut the one 
side off each which leaves them really ugly.  The guy in charge wouldn't 
budge an inch, but I talked to an engineer (higher up the food chain) 
who agreed they only needed to remove the problem branches and would 
pass on the instructions, BUT be sure I was out there when the crew 
doing the trimming came through.  I was <:-)) and they did a very nice 
job of trimming, even contouring the trees.  The E/W road to the South 
of us had a number of trees, including pine that grew up *directly* 
under the power line. Now a 40 foot pine cut off at the 20 foot level 
sure does look strange.  In other areas they just cut all the branches 
off the one side of the trees.

I should note that Consumers contracted this job out and the only trees 
the power company was actually involved with were the two Ash trees and 
probably those pine trees.  They did a good job of clearing the 
right-of-way through the woods to the North too, but as that was a good 
5 years ago they trees are already getting dangerously close to those 
lines. I'd imagine it's the same where they come across the section to 
the South.
> You would love the power company here:   They left quite a mess
> in my yard.   They said they would remove all the branches and
> trimmings... yep... they sure did... but left all the logs of the TRUNK
> and said they did not say they would remove the TRUNK ...  sorry...
> But they DO trim the branches back all along the lines and have a
> routine program for doing so.   Dirty  Birds .
Here (the Midland area) they do that routine when it starts costing more 
to fix the lines than clear the right of way.

Roger (K8RI - ARRL Life Member)
N833R (World's oldest Debonair)

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