September 8, 2003
INLAND EMPIRE, Calif., Sept. 8, 2003—The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has authorized Southern California Edison (SCE) to reimburse eligible property owners who have removed since April 3, 2003, or plan to remove, dead or dying trees that could fall upon SCE power lines in bark beetle-infested areas of San Bernardino and Riverside counties.
It was on April 3 that the CPUC ordered SCE and other regulated electric utilities to take all reasonable steps to identify and remove dead, dying or diseased trees threatening power lines in the bark beetle-infected areas.
The CPUC authorized SCE to reimburse property owners the lower of their actual costs to remove the trees or SCE’s average cost to remove trees.
Within 30 days, SCE will have developed the procedures eligible property owners must follow when seeking reimbursement for their tree removal costs. Once finalized, the company will communicate the procedures to affected property owners through direct mail, the news media, and through its Web site at www.sce.com/barkbeetle.
SCE is removing dead or dying trees that threaten its power lines, as determined by utility inspectors. Utility experts strongly urge those property owners who choose to take the responsibility for trimming and removing their tress to employ only experienced licensed or certified arborists qualified to perform work near power lines.
Customers who need SCE to temporarily drop service wires so that they can perform tree removal work should call 1-800-640-3652. With a minimum notice of five business days, there is no charge to customers for this service.
For more information about reimbursements or the company’s tree removal program, customers may either visit SCE’s Web site or call 1-800-640-3652.
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An Edison International company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of more than 12 million via 4.5 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within central, coastal and Southern California.