My tree is in an area of limited access. Can it still be serviced?
Public utilities have a statutory duty to protect the value and reliability of their equipment. If a public utility fails to obtain the owner’s consent to maintain or trim a tree, they may be held liable for significant damages. To avoid these costly outcomes, they will often partner with local officials and utilities. In addition, collaborating with these parties will reduce the burden of finding a vendor and will prevent the need to file lawsuits.
There are several ways to obtain permission to prune trees on public land. First, you should always contact the owner of the property and ask for permission. You should inform them of your intentions to perform maintenance before you begin any work on the property. If you don’t get permission to prune or remove the tree, you will be liable for the damages. In some cases, you can sue the utility company for trespassing on private property.
If you have a tree on public property, it is the responsibility of the municipality to maintain it. If you have no right of way, the governing body is responsible for maintenance. However, if the property is owned by a municipality, the responsibility falls on the municipality. RSA 41:11 gives the governing body the authority to manage the town’s public property. A public utility is obligated to maintain the tree.