Tree caused outages and relationship to stream and soil type

2020 Gregory Dahle, PhD, West Virginia University

We are concerned about the thousands of power outages caused by trees falling onto wires, poles and other power grid equipment. Trees are the leading cause of power outages on the East Coast, and 70-80% of these outages are caused by trees outside the power line right-of-way corridor. In order to help to reduce power outages, we are identifying factors that cause trees to uproot, break or otherwise fail. Some of the factors include proximity to water, soil type, species and slope. We are hoping to develop a predictive model to help utility companies plan where to site new lines, and a mechanism for prescriptive management to prevent outages where they are most likely to occur. Power outage are expensive, both in terms of lost revenue but also in the costs to fix them. If an accurate predictive model can be created, it will save money for consumers and improve power delivery.

Year: 2020

Funding Duration: 3year

Grant Program: Utility Arborist Research Fund Grant

Grant Title: Tree caused outages and relationship to stream and soil type

Researcher: Dr. Gregory A. Dahle

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For more information on this project, contact the researcher via TREE Fund at