(INDIANAPOLIS) - A new rule will standardize the tree trimming procedures for utility companies.
The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission approved a measure Wednesday that prohibits utility companies from topping trees or removing more than 25 percent of a tree without the property owner's consent, unless there is an emergency.
The rule will create consistency among trimming for Duke Energy, Indiana Michigan Power, Indianapolis Power and Light, Northern Indiana Public Service Company and Vectren.
The utilities are also required to provide notice prior to trimming and to remove debris due to normal maintenance within three days.
"Overall, this rule is a win for utility customers," said Commissioner David Ziegner in a news release. "Never before have there been standards in place guaranteeing that customers have an opportunity to interact with the utility before trimming occurs."
The terms of the rule were based on a 19-month investigation, which included gathering testimony from customers in Evansville, Fort Wayne, Indianapolis, Merrillville, Muncie and Seymour.
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