Thank you, wonderful electric company person!

So I called Portland General Electric today, trying to figure out what to do about the huge branch that fell on the cable outside my house (from the tree leaning menacingly over this entire part of the block. ) I didn’t really know what to expect… I’m just renting this house…

And they came out and fixed it for free! Yay! I didn’t expect that at all! It was a happy moment, full of good omens for the future. :slight_smile:

Generally, the electric company owns the cable either up to the point it enters your house, or up to the electric meter, depending on where you live. Anything that happens to the stuff they own is their responsibility to fix.

Good on you for calling and not trying to do anything about it yourself. A lot of people get hurt that way.

I agree with Silophant, It is their responsibility.

Why don’t you write the PGE crew a thank you note? The crew will be happy to hear from you! They often get nasty notes, so your kind word will be a pleasant experience for them.

Address it to the crew, not just PGE. Be sure to include the date and area. One of the poles near your house will have a tin badge with a number on it. It is the serial number for that pole. The repair will be indexed to that pole. That will help PGE get it to the correct crew.

I also thank you for not trying to fix this on your own. They are trained professionals, they know how to be safe!

We had a tree limb fall on the power line to our house during an ice storm about 10 years ago. It happened on a Friday, early evening. It was hanging down low and looked like it could snap the line at any minute. When I called the power company they said they’d send somebody out sometime Monday. I told them no, someone needed to take care of this ASAP before it pulled the line clear down and electrocuted someone. They said absolutely not, we’ll send someone Monday. I asked for a supervisor, who told me the same thing.

So, I called the police and told the dispatcher what was happening. Dispatcher told me they (the power company) were really bad about not taking care of things they were legally required to do unless forced. She assured me it would be dealt with. Thirty minutes later a truck showed up from the power company and two guys got out and took care of the limb with chainsaws. It took maybe 15 minutes. They probably spent more time arguing about it than if they had just done it in the first place.

If your ice storm was anything like the ice storms that I’ve worked then a 3 day wait to fix a problem where the customer still had lights on was a pretty mild ice storm.
In the ice storms I’ve worked the triage method was to do the jobs that restored the largest groups first. So if a tree limb took put power to 100 customers it got priority over the tree limb that took out 1 customer. Of course there’s always the situations where they realize that it’s best to take care of some squeaky wheels just to keep them from tieing up the time of the call centers and repair dispatchers.
I don’t mean to admonish you for your actions. From a customer’s view you had a legitimate need. But the bigger picture might be that there were actual “lights out” jobs ahead of your “lights on”. In cold weather that can be a life dangerous situation for the elderly and sick.
Old Utility Engineer who is thankful that he doesn’t have to work any more ice storms.

Around here, I don’t think the utility crews take care of things like overhanging tree branches - the utility usually subcontracts out to a tree service for that kind of stuff. Still, a thank-you note to whoever did the work would be nice.

In this case it was a mild ice storm. There were no power outages anywhere. It was a safety issue. There was a live line pulled down to about 5 feet from the ground by a broken limb, and if (when?) the limb broke clear free from the tree it would have pulled it clear to the ground. The guys who came out said yes, it was a genuine emergency and they should have been sent out immediately. If they had waited 3 days it probably would have cost a lot more to fix and been a serious electrocution risk.

I’m almost always impressed by the responsiveness of Portland city services. Smelly dead possum in the street on a hot Saturday afternoon? Animal control will respond. Smell gas? Gas company will come inside your house to find the problem and fix it, and then ask if you want them to check your gas appliances while they’re at it. Both of those are from personal experience. They also trim tree branches out of power lines and remove fallen timber outside your house after a storm.

It dropped a limb out of a tree and its a mild ice storm?:dubious:

in any case I’m glad you got it fixed.

Pretty much yes. If the whole tree would have come down, then it would have been a major ice storm.

Also, the limb may have been old and dead and ready to come down anyway.

The power company paid for 2 large trees to be removed from my brother’s backyard, because one was splitting and the other had several large dead branches, and he found out they might do this, so he asked and they did.

Not long afterwards, we had a big storm in my town and part of a tree came down on my house, and my neighbor’s too. They weren’t upset about it because they’re nice people and it wasn’t anyone’s fault. I asked if they would remove it, but it wasn’t their territory so I was on my own. I got razzed a bit about this, but I had nothing to lose by asking.

Yes, the limb was already dead, or close to it. The guys from the power company just cut it enough to get it off the line, which was all we expected. With it out of the way, we could see that limbs above it were in bad shape too. Since it was too big for us to clear out ourselves we just had a tree removal service take the whole tree.

Do thank them. They also probably have a Facebook page. I’ve seen a lot of positive comments about storm response in the Northwest, and some from people who don’t understand triage, electricity, or that the utilities in neighboring communities are also dealing with outages and storm debris and no, they can’t lend a few linemen.