Plan Before You Plant (Avoid Water Lines)
For Your Safety and Ours, Plan Before You Plant
When planting a new tree in your landscape, be sure to consider where your water lines and meter are located. Plan for the potential future size of the tree and root system. When a tree or its roots grow around water lines it could result in dangerous and costly situations.
The health of the tree could be affected if it interferes with water lines. If repairs are needed, the utility crew may need to dig around the tree or cut the roots. If there is a water leak, the tree could get too much water and the coil around the tree could become unstable. Any of these situations could negatively affect the health of the tree. Sometimes it can take years to see the effects of the damage; but, it can result in the tree falling without warning.
Water District Staff Safety
When District staff has to dig under or around a tree, the job becomes considerably more dangerous. Digging under a tree, removing soil, and cutting roots can greatly reduce the stability of a tree potentially causing it to fall on someone or something.
Because of their size and weight, falling trees are extremely dangerous. They can crush buildings or vehicles and anyone inside them. A falling tree can also bring down above-head utility lines causing power outages and electrical shock hazards. When crews respond to an emergency situation, tree interference can make the repair much more difficult. When a repair is delayed, customers may be without water for a longer period of time and the risk of property damage from flooding is higher.
How to Plan
The nursery where you buy your tree should have information on the potential growth of the tree. Plant your new tree in a place where it will not conflict with existing service lines in the ground. if you are unsure of the location of your underground utilities (water, gas, cable, electricity, phone, etc.) call Underground Service Alert (USA) at 811. All of the utility service lines will be marked for you at no cost.