PG&E and Contractors
PG&E's Vegetation Management Staff
The Company's service area is divided into eight Vegetation Management Areas. Each is staffed with Supervising Program Managers and Vegetation Program Managers whose responsibilities are to oversee and manage the contractor staff who inspect, prune and remove vegetation growing into and near power lines.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company uses several private contract companies to inspect 111,000 miles of overhead high voltage power lines in our service area. Their primary responsibilities are to inspect the vegetation adjacent to the power lines and to notify homeowners of upcoming tree work.
Inspection Contractor Qualifications
Many of our inspectors are Utility Foresters with degrees in forestry, biology, horticulture or related fields. They are knowledgeable and trained in the care and maintance of trees. PG&E’s Vegetation Management program has over 200 International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Certified Arborists, including Company and contracted staff.
Line Clearance Certified Tree Trimmers
Tree trimmers are required by the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration (CALOSHA) to be line-clearance certified in order to work near high voltage power lines. Each tree trimming company must have an ongoing line clearance safety program, as defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The program includes ongoing training, equipment maintenance and inspection programs to ensure tools are non-conductive for workers.
A homeowner should never work within 10 feet of high-voltage power lines.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company contracts only qualified line clearance tree contractors. Many independent tree trimmers claim they are "line clearance certified" because they once worked for a qualified line clearance tree company. However, the company must have a Line Clearance Certification program.