WALTON HILLS, Ohio (AP) — An aggressive national tree-trimming campaign since the blackout of 2003 appears to have had the intended effect. But the applause over the power-industry equivalent of a buzz cut isn't rising from at least one part of the republic: tree lovers.
Power companies are trying to balance the power demand and the need for what they call "vegetation management" with homeowners' affinity for towering greenery.
In 2010, a man in Pennsylvania's Blair County was put on probation for five years for threatening a trimmer and was ordered to get off his property when the utility returns. In 2011, police in Springfield, Mo., arrested a man with a gun who confronted a utility tree-trimmer on his property.
In the part of Ohio where a tree branch started the 2003 blackout, Akron-based FirstEnergy Corp. says some utility workers and contractors have been threatened.