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PG&E's flying tree-trimming work at Wunderlich Park in Woodside sparks safety concerns, citation from Cal Fire

Original post made on Mar 3, 2022

Pacific Gas and Electric is accused of using a helicopter outfitted with a massive, multi-blade saw in Wunderlich County Park this winter, without getting permits or notifying state and county agencies, according to county officials.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, March 3, 2022, 10:50 AM

Comments (4)

Posted by Don Pugh
a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Mar 3, 2022 at 2:42 pm

Don Pugh is a registered user.

This looks to be a great invention to permit much faster clearing of the high voltage right of way. It is way faster that manually cutting and more effective. The concern about the branches being left is not a big deal, considering having the forest burn down is a far worse situation.

Yes, PG&E should have gotten permits and addressed safety issues first. But there should be no obstacles to using the machine. The issue is clear. Do you want to increase fire safety by clearing the right of way? Let's not get in such a tizzy over this and keep clearing going.

Posted by Menlo Cyclist
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Mar 3, 2022 at 3:05 pm

Menlo Cyclist is a registered user.

This method of haphazardly trimming tree branches is absurd. This method will result in damage to the trees in a haphazard fashion and is a huge danger to the helicopter pilot dangling the large rotating blades if they are "blown" into the high voltage lines is pure craziness! (Death to the pilot and a fire from the helicopter crash!) Wow, PG&E never ceases to amaze me with their unsafe practices. The tree clearing (in a WIDE swatch around and under the high voltage lines) should be done with a crew and gas-powered saws "initially" and then ongoing clearing of brush/small vegetation be cleared on a routine schedule so the trees do not grow close enough to hit the high voltage lines. Tree clearing maintenance should be ongoing, year-round in all of the western states that have the trees so near to high voltage lines in order to end the fires being sparked from tree limbs hitting the wires. PG&E is just trying to do a quick, sloppy job in a very dangerous way. PG&E, I say, "Do it right the first time." "There are no short-cuts to do this job correctly. What are you thinking!? Additionally, your "dangling blade method" will leave the forest floors a huge mess of broken trees and wood debris that fuels even more fires.

Posted by lspw
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Mar 3, 2022 at 3:09 pm

lspw is a registered user.

People getting into "a tizzy"? I should think so! Bear Gulch Road is adjacent to Wunderlich Park, and any fire caused by PG&E carelessness would endanger the lives and homes of nearby residents.

Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Mar 3, 2022 at 6:37 pm

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

Menlo Cyclist:

They've been flying helicopters close to high tension lines for decades. It very interesting to watch. A worker sits on a platform and the helicopter approaches the live line. The helicopter hovers and the worker clamps a cable connecting the helicopter to the live high tension line. Then the worker does his work while the helicopter hovers next to the high tension cables. That is far more hazardous than the clearing with the dangling saw.

Watch this: Web Link">Web Link

And this: Web Link">Web Link

And if you're actually interested in how the flying tree saw works, watch this: Web Link

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