Handling of border zone trees
The operational safety of the transmission line is ensured by clearing the rights-of-way mechanically at intervals of 5 to 8 years. Trees in the border zones of transmission lines are managed at intervals of 10 to 25 years.
Attention is also placed in storing the timber at a safe distance from the power lines and in the maintenance of yard trees. Particular caution should be used in independent processing of trees in the vicinity of transmission lines.
Clearing of rights-of-way
The right-of-way under the transmission line is cleared on average every 6 years. Consequently, approximately 6,000 hectares are cleared every year. All clearing is carried out mechanically, either by using machines or with a clearing saw. Chemical prevention of coppice is not used in the maintenance of powerlines.
Rights-of-way are selectively cleared such that low-growing trees and bushes that pose no threat to system security can be left to grow in the area. The rule of thumb is that the trees and bushes left behind by the clearing do not exceed the height of three meters.
Trees and saplings removed from the right-of-way in conjunction with clearing are the property of the landowner. Through expropriation, Fingrid has the right to manage vegetation in the right-of-way. Clearing does not require any action by the landowner.
Each spring, Fingrid sends letters to landowners to notify them of the clearing of rights-of-way taking place that year. Each year's clearing sites are also presented on a map in the "Upcoming clearings and feedback" -section (Tulevat raivaukset ja palaute, only in Finnish). Feedback on clearing is requested to be sent via the forementioned page.
Additional information on the clearing of rights-of-way:
Voimajohtoaukeiden raivaukset (Clearing of rights-of-way, in Finnish)
Fingrid considers the management of trees in yard areas an important task, which the company wants to carry out as carefully as possible; the handling of yard trees is important especially for the residents' safety.
Fingrid’s transmission lines were originally constructed far from inhabited areas, but as the yard areas and gardens of houses and summer cottages have expanded over the decades, some also reach the border zones of transmission lines or even under them. Yard areas only account for a small portion, a couple of per cent, of Fingrid’s total transmission line areas of approximately 50,000 hectares.
When planting garden plants, the proximity of a transmission line should be taken into account. The need for clearing can be avoided completely by choosing low-growing trees and bushes. Moreover, management of trees, such as regular cutting of branches and top, can help to avoid more extensive measures. More tips on how to
Handling of border zone trees
Trees in the border zones are cut down at intervals of 10 to 25 years. If trees in the border zone need to be felled, Fingrid arranges a joint felling and sale for the trees. It is important to remember that logging close to a transmission line requires special professional skills.
Fingrid sends letters to landowners to notify them of tree management in border zones. Overheight trees in the border zones are cut down, or the tops of trees (2 to 4 metres) are sawn off by using helicopter sawing. Trees whose tops have been cut need not be immediately harvested. Decay in trees whose tops have been sawn off progresses so slowly that the landowner does not need to cut down these trees immediately, but they can be cut during the next harvesting. Trees in border zones whose tops have not been cut should also be harvested at the same time.
If the majority of trees in the border zone are overheight, it is usually best to deal with the entire border zone at once by removing all trees growing in it. At the time of the felling, the landowner's approval is asked. With the approval, the landowner can state whether they wish to participate in joint sales of the felled timber or keep the timber themselves. Redemptive felling, where trees that are too long are felled to the ground, is also used as an alternative.
Forest management in border zones
Forest management for the border zones of transmission line areas involves many special features, which should be taken into account when deciding on forest regeneration and management measures.
In order to enhance forest management in these special areas, Forestry Development Centre Tapio has drawn up forest management recommendations for the border zones. These recommendations are presented in a forest management card (in Finnish), which can be downloaded from the adjacent link.
Storage of timber
Due to safety reasons, timber must not be stored under a transmission line or sideways measured no closer than 10 meters to the closest conductor of the line.
Felling of trees
Trees must not be felled towards a transmission line. First, fell the trees farther away from the line and proceed so that you fell the trees closest to the line last. Use a rope significantly longer than the tree to be felled, or some other way of ensuring the direction the tree will fall in. If you are unsure of the success of the felling work or would like more information on the felling of trees, please contact Fingrid's regional expert.
If the tree still begins to fall towards the transmission line, act as follows:
- Immediately interrupt work.
- Stride as quickly as possible, only one foot touching the ground at once, to a distance of at least 20 metres from the tree.
- If the falling tree hits the line or becomes stuck in the conductors, notify Fingrid's Grid Control Centre right away, tel. 030 395 4300, or call the emergency number 112.
- You must not try to disentangle a tree touching the conductors.