Distribution Rights of Way
Distribution lines carry electricity from local substations to homes and businesses that we serve. These electrical conductors can be located underground or on overhead utility poles. A distribution right-of-way agreement gives access to a strip of land (corridor) so that utilities (electric, telephone, cable, water and/or gas) may build, operate and maintain service lines. This right-of-way corridor helps us deliver reliable electricity.
A right-of-way agreement, which may be in the form of an easement, permit or other form of authorization, grants a utility the right to use, access or traverse a designated area of real property. An easement is typically granted by property owners to an electric utility for the purpose of constructing, operating and maintaining power lines and other equipment. Our distribution rights of way are typically 20 feet wide – or 10 feet on each side of the right-of-way centerline.
We maintain more than 18,000 miles of overhead distribution power lines. Trees and other vegetation can pose a potential reliability hazard to these lines if they are not managed proactively. Overhead distribution lines are the lines that most commonly experience outages due to the interference of trees and other vegetation.
Duke Energy obtains easements that grant us the right to protect our electrical facilities by maintaining or clearing any encroaching vegetation that poses a threat to the reliable operation of the power line. This may include live and/or dead, diseased or damaged trees located inside or outside the right of way.