CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Members of the state Public Service Commission have approved comprehensive rights-of-way vegetation management programs for Mon Power and Potomac Edison, subsidiaries of FirstEnergy.
With the plans, the goal is to improve electric service reliability and lessen the impact and recovery time from service interruptions following major weather events in the future — those like the derecho in June 2012, Superstorm Sandy in 2012 or the winter storms of 2013 and 2014.
In Jan. 2013, the PSC ordered all electric utility companies operating in West Virginia to file such proposals for trimming programs.
Now that those plans have approval from the PSC, workers will have to go through the entire service area and systematically trim the trees and vegetation in rights-of-way so there is little to no interference with power lines.
The companies will be able to recover the additional costs associated with the vegetation plans from customers.
In March, the PSC approved such comprehensive plans for American Electric Power’s Appalachian Power and Wheeling Power. Plans for four smaller companies had been previously approved.