ACT News


What rot: Lyons resident's anger over decaying power poles

An audit of the ACT's electricity infrastructure is needed to prevent trees from clashing with powerlines and sparking a fire, according to a Lyons resident.

Andrew Moseley said he wrote to former chief minister Jon Stanhope three or four years ago about the problem.

He said a rotting power pole at the rear of his property was also a fire risk.

Moseley's concern followed The Canberra Times story on Wednesday about powerlines arcing on the outskirts of Lyons on Sunday morning.

Owners of horses in a community agistment paddock saw flames shooting into the sky. The fire brigade and ActewAGL responded to a 000 call. A fire had not started.

Mr Moseley said a rotten power pole at the rear of his home in Deloraine Street had a yellow safety tag on it, warning people not to climb it.


"When the wind blows it rocks back and forth. When birds land on it, it is so fragile the pole moves."

He is also worried about a gum tree growing through powerlines behind the Lyons shops.

"I note the high temperatures for this Friday and Saturday," he said.

"The gum tree and power line present a risk to the residence of Lyons."

ActewAGL says it already inspects the network every three years; and power poles once every four-and-a-half years; and annual checks in bushfire prone areas.

ActewAGL general manager network services Rob Atkin said two poles near Mr Moseley's home had been inspected and despite the rough appearance of one, and steel brackets supporting another one, both were sound.

Powerlines were inspected in spring 2011, and would be inspected again during the next 22 months.

The owner of another at Lyons where a tree was growing above the powerlines would be given 28 days to arrange to have it trimmed.

"If, after two notifications from ActewAGL, the land-owner has not taken any action to trim the tree, ActewAGL will arrange an accredited tree surgeon to trim the tree at the expense of the land owner," Mr Atkin said in a statement.

ActewAGL also appeals to the community to identify and report issues to its electricity faults and emergencies line on 13 10 93. Over the last decade ActewAGL has run regular campaigns to inform the community about their responsibility to ensure that trees on their property are clear of powerlines, report hazards and stay safe around electricity infrastructure.


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