Tree FAQ

Why do we trim trees?
Trees are generally the most common cause of power outages.
Trees and vegetation in the right-of-way can:
• Cause power outages and lights to blink
• Waste electricity and create a hazard by providing a path to the ground
• Become a fire hazard
• Be a safety hazard for workers and members
• Block visual inspections, making repairs difficult and increasing outage length

How is the right-of-way cleared?
Cutting and trimming is done by trained, professional utility line clearance personnel using specific and proven arborist industry standards

The electric system is regularly inspected for dead, dying and leaning dangerous trees. When found, they are marked with tape and them trimmed or removed to eliminate threat to electric distribution lines and equipment.
• Green tape is trim
• Red tape is remove
• Blue tape is make safe (trim or cut enough to prevent hazard)

Will I be notified prior to trimming?
Yes, BCREMC contractors are instructed to make an effort to contact every member prior to work being done. Contact may be in-person, by leaving a green door card or by phone if we have your current phone numbers. In certain circumstances this cannot always be done as in vacant land with no residence or storm situations.

How often is the work done?
We maintain the right of ways on a schedule of every 4 to 5 years by individual line sections. We also periodically inspect the rights of way for dead, dying and leaning danger trees. When found, they are marked with colored ribbon and then trimmed or removed to eliminate threat to electric distribution lines and equipment.

I have concerns about a tree, what do I do?
Call into the office 812-372-2546 and let the customer service representative know your concerns, they will then make a service order and the Arborist will come out to the property and assess the tree and give a recommendation. Please give as much detail as possible as to location and concerns you have with the tree. We also request that the member mark the tree in some fashion as to identify the tree, this way we know exactly what tree you are referring to. Marking can be done with ribbon, bright colored paint or a trash bag or shopping bag tied to the tree will work sufficiently.

What does the colored tape signify?
• Green tape = trim
• Red tape = cut the tree completely down.
• Blue tape = make safe (trim or cut enough to prevent hazard)

What is a Make-Safe Tree?
A “Make-Safe Tree” is a tree that is in some way posing a threat or hazard to the electrical system. Several defects can lead to the determination of the hazard including but not limited to: Weak branch unions, uprooting, dead limbs or the whole tree is dead, Emerald Ash Bore infection, mechanical damage, animal damaged, etc…. Make Safe trees will be trimmed as needed to eliminate the threat to the electrical system. REMC may or may not cut the whole tree down depending on the circumstances, a stub or base of the tree may be left standing, but will be clear of the electrical equipment. Debris on Make-Safe Trees will not be cleaned up, all brush and associated debris will be left on the property and not hauled off or chipped.

Will REMC clean up storm debris?
Storm debris that falls on the lines or equipment will be cleared from the electrical equipment to restore power as quickly as possible, but all debris will remain on the member’s property and no clean-up will be performed after.

I would like wood chips, how do I get them?
We will deliver wood chips to your property if we are in the area, please go to and enter your information and we will get you a load of chips as soon as possible. This is a free service; you do not have to pay.

Does BCREMC trim service lines to my home?
BCREMC will trim service lines from the transformer, to the weather head on your home or business. Clearance will be 3’ diameter around the line. Dead and danger trees near service lines will be evaluated on an individual basis by our on staff Arborist.

Does BCREMC trim around security lights?
BCREMC will trim the wire leading to the security light and around the actual security light to obtain 3’ clearance from BCREMC owned equipment, but will not trim or cut vegetation for light direction.

Will I be charged for tree trimming?
No, you will not be charged for tree trimming done on your property that is authorized by BCREMC.