Staying safe

Trees and Powerlines

Network Tasman is committed to working with tree owners to keep our network of power lines safe and to reduce the chances of loss of your power supply. 

Trees are an important part of our environment BUT trees that grow too close to power lines are a dangerous hazard. Trees can cause power outages and damage power lines and poles, especially during strong winds and storms.

Tree Owners Responsibilities

There are rules about safe distances between trees and power lines. As a property owner, you are responsible for keeping the trees clear of power lines at your property. 

The Electricity (Hazards from Trees) Regulations 2003 require all local electricity distribution companies to make sure tree owners know trees must not grow too close to power lines. These regulations give the clearances needed for trees from powerlines.
Staying safe

Trees Growing Too Close to Power Lines

The Growth Limit Zone (GLZ) is the space around a power line that trees must not grow into or encroach even in windy and stormy conditions. It is not safe for you to cut trees that have grown into the Growth Limit Zone.
The table below gives the clearances needed between the closest part of a tree and power lines. The clearances needed varies with the voltage of lines - the higher the voltage the larger the clearance. The clearance required also increases with long spans of power lines. Contact our vegetation team if you want to check the voltage of power lines near your trees.
Staying safe

Cut or Trim Notices

If you receive a Cut or Trim (CT) Notice, it will detail the tree(s) at your property that are too close to the power lines and explain your options.

You will need to choose whether to have your trees trimmed or felled. Network Tasman offers the first trim free. After that, it is your responsibility to make sure the tree doesn't grow too close again. If you decide you don't want to keep the tree we offer a free fell.

You are required to complete the notice and return it to Network Tasman.
See the frequently asked questions for more information.
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Cutting Trees Near Power Lines

Don't be tempted to trim or fell any trees that have grown into the Growth Limit Zone of power lines. If you cut trees close to live power lines, you can get a SEVERE ELECTRIC SHOCK. Power lines are dangerous!

Only use tree contractors that are qualified and approved to work near live power lines and to trim or fell trees that have grown into the Growth Limit Zone.

Network Tasman approved tree contractor:
Treescape - 03 544 0588
staying safe

Tree Hazards

When surveying the power lines our vegetation surveyors look for tree hazards such as damaged branches in trees that could fall onto the power lines. Also, trees that are in fall distance that are showing an increasing risk to the lines due to wind damage, declining health, increase in size or changes to the surrounding environment (erosion). 

These trees do not come under the regulations so we do not issue CT notices for them. However, they can cause extensive power outages and damage to lines and poles. 

Owners of high-risk trees will be contacted by our surveyors to discuss the options. In many cases, we offer assistance with felling high-risk trees. Please contact our vegetation department to report any tree hazards. 

See the frequently asked questions for more information.
Staying safe

Other Tree and Vegetation Issues

Service Lines - This is the power line that connects your house or property to our network distribution lines.
Creepers on Poles and Guy Wires - Creepers can damage poles and can climb onto the power lines and cross arms which can cause power outages.
Trees and Vegetation Restricting Access to Poles - Our linesmen need safe, clear ladder access to the top of poles for both maintenance work and during a power outage.
Possum Guards on Poles - Trees and other vegetation need to be kept clear of this guard otherwise it doesn't work.
Padmount Transformers - These are large green boxes on the ground. The surrounding area needs to be kept clear of vegetation so it can be accessed and opened by linesmen.
Black Boxes - Some main electricity cables run underground and are contained within a small black box. These need to be kept clear so they are easily seen and can be opened.
Underground Cables - It is very important that you know where any underground electricity cables are before you dig or drive stakes into the ground.
Horticultural Shelter Belts - Shelter belt trees need to be trimmed frequently to ensure that they do not grow into the Growth Limit Zone of power lines.
For more detailed information on other tree and vegetation issues, click on the button below:

Plan Before You Plant

Avoid planting trees and shrubs that will grow close to powerlines or that will pose a future fall distance hazard to overhead power lines. We recommend that fast-growing species such as Gums, Pines, Wattles, Willows, Poplars etc are not planted close to power lines.
Their proximity to the lines
The maximum size of the tree/shrub (check the mature height of any trees and shrubs that you plan to plant near power lines). Garden Centre labels often give the height at 5 years, not when fully grown.
The stability of the tree
Environmental surroundings
Will the trees shed bark
Carefully planning your planting will avoid trees having to be trimmed or removed when they grow too close to powerlines. Make sure you know where any underground electricity cables are at your property and do not plant trees or shrubs near them. Think before you dig! For more information, please go to our Excavation page.
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What you can do to Help

If you have trees and shrubs growing near power lines check them regularly and keep them trimmed so they don't grow into the Growth Limit Zone. It is safer and will be less expensive to maintain them this way.
Think about removing trees/shrubs that are difficult to keep clear of power lines and replace them with smaller species.
Please also keep your trees and vegetation clear of power poles, guy wires and any other power line or electricity hardware - remember our linesmen need to be able to access these.
If your trees do grow too close to power lines, arrange for one of the qualified tree contractors listed to trim them for you. Phone our vegetation team if you have any questions.
Contact our vegetation team to report any trees growing VERY close to power lines or if you see damaged/hazardous trees near power lines.
Frequently Asked Questions
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Any Concerns or Questions About Trees?

If you are calling about an interruption to your power supply or a fault, please call
 the toll free number (0800 508 100) for our 24hr Fault Response Line
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